Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Bayou Renaissance Man: The blindness of the ideologically bound

Bayou Renaissance Man: The blindness of the ideologically bound: One thing that's struck me very forcibly in the whole Tor situation is how utterly blind to reality are many of those on the left/liber...



A good, solid article. To which I only have this to add.

As Mr. Grant started with, objective facts are the problem -- the "facts" of the Puppy Kickers, theirs, not those of the Sad Puppies. Remember, everything is *subjective.* Words mean what they want them to mean. It's postmodern, deconstructionist BS every single step of the way. These guys follow Herbert Marcuse -- where freedom of speech is good for when their enemies are in power, but not for when THEY are in power.

They're not even playing the game of moving the goalposts. The posts are wherever they say they are. Reality is whatever they say it is. And oh, can you define what the meaning of the word "is" is?

... See, this is what happens when they piss off a philosophy major. Give me Aquinas any day.

Though what they don't realize is that we are in control of the narrative. We control the vertical, we control the horizontal, and we've got truth on our side, and you can't kill the truth. It can only be smothered into unconsciousness for a little while.

DragonForce - The Last Journey Home

Yeah, this is how I feel whenever I come home from a long trip. This includes the bad CGI graphics.





Monday, June 29, 2015

Sad Puppies Bite Back XI: Puppies with Teeth

IF YOU ARE NEW TO SPBB, CLICK THE SAD PUPPY TAB ABOVE FOR PREVIOUS EPISODES


This one is a little complicated, and will come with plenty of footnotes.

Also, this contains a few requested / suggested SWATs.

And Jim Butcher.

Also into this enters Peter Grant, of Bayou Renaissance Man, who has even had a few posts on this series.  Basically, he's a guy who even Larry Correia respects.  Grant is also leading a boycott of Tor, especially after Irene Gallo's comments a few weeks ago. He basically wants a real, public, apology from Tor.... while on the other hand, Vox Day wants Irene Gallo fired.

Anyway, once again, this is parody. I'm just making fun of a lot of the stupid. I'm not taking any of this seriously, and neither should you. If you do take this seriously, you need to lighten up. To my knowledge, none of these people mentioned in this series have even been SWATted.

Fun fact, though: I've posted a link or two at a blog that has chronicled these posts. The replies to those links have made it clear to me that some idiots have seen these blogs as death threats.  Yes, you read that right, "Sad Puppies Bite Back" is now a series of death threats, according to some of the Puppy Kickers. Even though the original premise of SWATting is about attempted assassination by SWAT team, and even though the targets are all Sad Puppies, the Puppy Kickers are the abused party. Remember that.

No wonder some people I know want to rename them the Angry Pussies.

Also, when I TWEETED that fun fact, said blog replied that I am a man of "great simplicity of mind." Having read his comments section ... seriously, buddy, don't go there. Heh.

Anyway, time to once again UNLEASH THE PUPPIES.


Peter "Renaissance Man" Grant
Dorothy "Earhart" Grant

Sigh. Seriously. This guy's about as threatening as Brad Torgersen.
And yes, she is a pilot.

Peter Grant
















[SWAT team pulls up to a house on the bayou. Peter Grant sits off to one side, painting a sunrise over the ocean. The SWAT team unloads casually.] Peter Grant?

[The painter looks up and smiles broadly] Let me guess, 911 call? Man with a gun?

[SWAT #1 nods] Yes sir. But a few guys at the station know you were a prison chaplain, so we took it with a grain of salt.

[PG] Should have taken it with tequila. Goes better with the salt. As for the call, I wondered when they would get around to me, especially after I started my Tor boycott.

[PG slowly rises from the easel, heads inside with a heavy limp] Follow me inside. Got something I want to show you fellas.

[SWAT #1 follows.  The inside of the house has a ceiling that looks like the Sistine chapel. The walls are made of marble, painted with frescoes. In the front corner of the house is a shrine.  Then there's a gun rack. PG himself is heading towards a computer station next to the guns]

[SWAT #1] Nice weapon collection.

[PG laughs] It's Tennessee. Are we allowed residence without an arsenal? 

[SWAT #1 nods] True

[PG boots up computer] Excuse the mess.

[SWAT #1 looks down.  There are neatly stacked books on the coffee table, ranging from theology and philosophy to mechanical engineering.] Not a problem.

[PG taps the computer a few times]  That's what I thought. See, you're one part of a number of SWATting incidents of authors.  I used to be in IT, and John Ringo has some fans in the NSA who keep reading his books, so he's sicced them on it, too. Give it about two or three more phone calls, and we'll have the guy.

[Sound of an engine comes in, Puddle jumper lands next to the house.  PG smiles] Could be worse, it could be Tom Knighton's tank.

[Dorothy Grant is heard outside, offering lemonade to all the SWAT guys, who politely decline. She enters the front]  Peter? We're entertaining guests?

[PG grins] We've been SWATted.

[She nods] Any idea by whom?

[PG] At a guess? The usual suspect.

[DG]  Well, just bless. His. Heart.

[Both men cringe at the most threatening insult in all of the South.  PG continues]  Apparently, there's another phone call going out from the phone. Give it another two calls, you'll have the sucker.

[SWAT #1 nods] Thank you, sir, we'll keep track, and get back to you if there is anything.

[SWAT leaves. Dorothy hugs. Peter. They watch SWAT drive off, and they wave goodbye]

[DG] Everything went well?

[PG] Yup. And if it didn't, we've got the automated turrets, just in case they came in shooting.

[DG] So, who's the next person being SWATted?

[PG shrugs]  I have no idea.  The burner phone wasn't calling 911 this time. The outgoing call was to another country.

[DG] Really? Why?

[PG] No idea. I don't even know why this guy would call Australia.

Peter Grant is also the name of Led Zeppelin's manager, so researching Mr. Grant was fun.

As for Australia....

Sunday, June 28, 2015

TONIGHT ON THE CATHOLIC GEEK: Karina Fabian and Infinite Space Infinite God!

Remember when I took a look at Karina Fabian's Infinite Space Infinite God II? It was an anthology of Catholic Science fiction. It was odd, but fun. Like every anthology I've ever read, it had some hits and misses, but it was overall fun.

Now, tonight, on the Catholic Geek, I have Karina and one of her authors from the original ISIG (and ISIG II) Colleen Drippe.

Tonight, at 7PM, EST, I will have both Colleen and Karina On my radio show.  Keep in mind this link right here will not play anything until that time.

What I will cover, to my chagrin, will be Pope Francis, his global warming encyclical, and his statements on guns. Oy.

Remember, this IS a call-in show. You CAN call in. The number is in the link.

If you are seeing this post AFTER June 28, 2015, at 7:00PM EST, this player below should work

Should being the operative word.


Check Out Culture Podcasts at Blog Talk Radio with We Built That Network on BlogTalkRadio

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Friday, June 26, 2015

Good Science Fiction

Good science fiction requires two things: good world building, and good characters.

Obviously, all writing requires good characters, but in the world of SF, the world and the characters are interlinked. The world created by the writer is going to shape the characters as much as anything else.

Let's look at why the original Star Trek worked, shall we? While the Federation wasn't as well developed as it would become, most of the places the Enterprise visited had fairly simply ideas behind it, but you could see how that worked. Even if it included Roman Imperial Nazis, or a world run on the model of the gangs of Chicago. They took simple ideas, made a world around them, and tossed in their semi-iconic characters, who are all perfectly likable, into the mix.

Then you go into Babylon 5. It had a deep world in the background, and that's evidence from the various and sundry guide books for role playing games. It it depth, it had science that obeyed the actual laws of physics. It had politics – and none of this Utopian, one-world BS of the federation. Star Trek was one big happy fleet, while B5 had opposing views and opinions, and hate groups and civil war, without the aliens fresh from Mordor. Even at Star Trek's deepest, they had, what, three episodes of DS9? The Maquis? Who, on Voyager, were assimilated by the Federation after one episode and half a season? Even the Klingons, at their worst, had a bought of internal strife that lasted for … an episode? Three? B5 had a year and a half, if not three (depending on how you count it).

The best science fiction has a whole range of culture and society, as well as spiffy technology. I believe it was Sarah Hoyt who pointed out to me that SF has two core tenets: either it's hard SF, or cultural SF (much of which is owned by SJWs). But what happens when you have someone like John Ringo or David Weber, or a Babylon 5, who cover science, history, technology, culture, economies, and how things get done not only from a technology aspect, but also a governmental aspect? Star Trek really never had a history behind it until later, and none that was ever really felt during the show, and made up as they went along, and we won't even go into whether or not they don't need money (as Troi once told Mark Twain) or if they operated on a system of small gold bars (DS9)

Heck, when I wrote Codename: Winterborn, I went through a lot of trouble trying to apply all of these lessons. A lot of it was so easy, I'm surprised more people don't do it more often.

When my co-author, Allan, first mentioned his world to me, before I even signed on, he had a simple premise: the world had been nuked on 4-1-2090, with San Francisco cut off by miles of wasteland from the “real world.” From there, a lot of it was easy. I just asked questions. And what he didn't know, I reasoned.

What's the economy? For San Francisco, locally, it's a barter system. However, since the larger corporations still have connections to the outside world, money is still good. Why would corporations be in San Francisco? Because there are now no limits on off-coast drilling. Duh!

What's the history? Allan wanted Israel to take over the Middle East in the 2060s. From there, I created the Bethlehem Catholic Church … because Rome was nuked when everyone started breaking out their own atomic toys. And since the Franciscans were long ago given places of worship to run in the Holy Land (this goes back to Saint Francis), Bethlehem sounded like a great place to move. Yup, the Catholic Church. We're like roaches. We WILL survive being nuked. You can't stop us, you can't kill us. We'll always come back in three days. MUAHAHAHAHAAHA....

Anyway...

Also, when I did the math on anti-ballistic missile systems (which are already up and running, by the by), I figured that Allan's United States would only be partially nuked. But that would certainly take a good chunk out of congress.

The nuclear war led Allan to create San Francisco, but I figured “So, there's a real world out there, right? And the real world has satellites, right? Well then, that means the rest of the world knows. World governments know, if nothing else. This makes San Francisco a great place for dropping off the inconvenient of their population. Why kill them when you can just be rid of them?” This created Exiles. When I suggested making a spy to be dumped there, Allan said “I'll call him Mister Anderson, like The Matrix.” He became Kevin Anderson.

But what horrible, horrible sin could Kevin commit to send him to a little backwater hell? Something to do with a mission. Do I know any places that'll be the enemy in 2093, since the Middle East will be run by an ally?

Oh, wait! I know where all the remaining Islamofascists will be! Europe! Let's make it France! (Whose birthrate in 2003 was less than half that of the fringe elements who tended towards radical Islam, meaning that by 2050, France might just be the Islamic Republic of France).

You can see how the progression goes from there. After a while, and after enough time, the world writes itself. But in order to get there, a writer has to bring something to the table. A worldview, a knowledge of how the world works (either theirs or the real world), and it proceeds from there.

Good science fiction has depth, of both world and of character. The world building can be cultural, technological, or both, but there's got to be something there that warrants it being a tale of science fiction. But most of all, the characters must carry it. If it doesn't, then the writing just sucks. I'm not going to read books about technology. I never even read the Star Trek technical manual.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

On the Pope: Stop the Stupid

Ever since Pope Francis was elected, I've been told that he's been part of a particular sect called Liberation Theology. It's basically the equivalent of saying that no, the Pope actually isn't Catholic, and that he's going to destory the foundations of the Catholic church.

This week?  I've had that to the tenth power.

I've had to listen to a LOT of bullcrap. For months it's ben "Oh, the Pope is a Godless Commie leftist."  Every other schmuck wants to say the "Sky is Falling!" "Schism!" Death! Doom! Despair! 

And this isn't a political thing, really.  People on the right scream schism. People on the left say "The Pope will bring the downfall of all that's evil about the Catholic church."

What have I been saying?

I've been saying "READ THE ARTICLES IN CONTEXT YOU G**D**N STUPID DUMB F**KS." 

But no, no one wants to read ANYTHING the Pope says, whole and entire. They want Francis to be a dirty commie bastard and screw you if you say different.  They WANT a schism. They WANT the sky to be falling.

Oh look -- this is what the latest encyclical says.

OH MY GOD, he's linked the value of human life to conservation!  He's talking about the value of human life over other animals! Save the whales AND the baby human. There are men, there are women, and there IS NO OPTION C.  The Pope is talking about the stewardship of God's creation, the need to explore ideas and not shackle science to politics.  He's evening telling people that participation isn't Facebook activism!  Wow.

GASP. It's almost like it's in tune with the encyclicals of past popes! I was promised something DIFFERENT!!!!

I'M SHOCKED! SHOCKED I SAY! THE POPE MIGHT ACTUALLY, POSSIBLY, BE CATHOLIC! THE WORLD WILL END! THE WORLD WILL EEENNNNNDDDDDDDDD

Stop it! Stop it! Stop it! Stop it! Stop it! Stop it! Stop it! Stop it! Stop it! Stop it! Enough.

"Oh, the Pope is one of the liberation theology people! He's a Latin American Jesuit! That proves it!"

Oh? Really? Where? How? John Paul II hated Liberation Theology and promoted Francis, so how does this man manage to slip past JPII?  How?  Please, tell me that.  And do it by providing evidence. But no. They can't. They say it's so, and shut up.

I am so freaking DONE with these people, it isn't even funny.

Hell, Larry Correia made a joke about "If you're not happy with the Catholic church being against guns, we'll send some Mormons on bikes your way. We have cookies."  

I damn near leaped down his throat because I've been listening to so much utter bullcrap about Francis, I couldn't even see it as a joke.

Oh, and for the record, THE POPE ISN'T AGAINST GUNS.  Thank you. 

And if you tell me he is, for the love of God, I will stomp on you until the fecal matter that passes for brains come out your ears. 

Yes, I am tired of the stupid. The idiocy.  I am drowning in it.  I am choking on it. The "real" conservatives who know more than I do and are seeing schism everywhere. The "good liberals" who are seeing the Pope put their agenda on the map!

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Amaranthe - Digital World

I was not impressed with the original, official video.

.... but then I saw the stunts in this one. You can watch it on mute if you must, but you'll find something then.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Radio Show #3 -- Tom Knighton and the Attack of the Puppies.


Check Out Culture Podcasts at Blog Talk Radio with We Built That Network on BlogTalkRadio



I'm feeling lazy today.  So here's a new radio show broadcast dedicated to ... well, video games and Sad Puppies.



Sunday, June 21, 2015

Saturday, June 20, 2015

Top ten blogs of The Pius Trilogy, June 2015 (Puppies Take over)

My radio show tomorrow night will be all about Sad Puppies.  If you thought they were taking over my life before, just wait a minute, you'll see.

As for another top ten .... Yes. another one. I posted this list for the 500th blog in February.

However, I'm already up to blog #580, and it's only four months later.

Also? The list is radically different.

1) Who would Captain America vote for? An election special:
This one is still on top. Odd though, huh?  Written back for the Presidential election of 2012, I was fed up with politics, and thought it much more amusing to speculate on what comic book characters would vote for who. I still like it better than most modern politics.  The hits on this one used to equal an entire month of viewership on the blog....

But then #2 happened.

2) Sad Puppies Bite Back.
The first journey down the rabbit hole. Yes. It was a one-shot that spiraled so far out of control, I really don't see the end of it. But people are still coming to the blog just to read them.  I'd publish these, but I'd really like to avoid being sued by David Gerrold or John Scalzi, or any of the other Puppy Kickers.

This is where it started, with Larry and Brad and Sarah.  And from what I've found? All of them I've SWATted found it funny.  Who knew?

3) Sex, DC Comics, and ... wtf? 
Yup, it's still here. Right after the dawn of DC's New 52 Universes in 2011, the comics had gone into a sideways spiral of strange. I think this had something to do with sex being in the title.


4) Thils one is also still here.  Waaaay back in 2010, I ripped apart all of the Disasters to Marvel At: A Comic Discussion, with every stupid decision that Marvel comics had made for the previous 5 years.  Sadly, some of those decisions are still going strong.

Where's the difference, you ask?

5) Sad Puppies Bite Back (Part two) 
This is where things start going really odd. And I probably should have seen it coming that things were going to really go sideways ... "sideways" as in "The Puppies have taken over my blog."  I think part one got suggestions of nominating this for a "Best related" award from the Hugos.

6) Cry Havoc! And Let Slip the Puppies of War!
This was after the Entertainment Weekly's libelous article about Sad Puppies, written and published without talking to anyone within Sad Puppies. At all. Yes, really.  Believe it or not, in retrospect, this was not what got me really into the Sad Puppies bandwagon. That was when someone decided to go after Brad Torgersen's wife. Then, then I had a meltdown, and decided someone needed a stern talking to.

7) Puppies Come to WorldCon  (SPBB III)
This was going to be The End. Period. Dot. Final. The last straw. The Puppies were going to come to the Hugos, and it would have to end there. Why? Because there would be nothing left for me to write until the Hugos came out. It was a perfect out, right? Right?

8) Snarky Theology 4: "Things that go boink in the night."
Yeah, this one is still here.  From the Easter of 2011, it's still on the top ten list. I can't get rid of the damn thing. I had tried to play nice and explain my faith, and tenets of Catholicism to the average person.  That ended in disaster and a flame war, and a few other things going wrong alonh the way.

But, once again, Sex scores well on the site.

This is still freaking strange for a blog all about Catholic thrillers.

9) Recommended Reading; Larry Correia.
Surprise, another blog that's slightly Puppy related.

This one was at the top of the charts the first week it was up back in January. Given the Puppies posts, I'm almost surprised it was still there.

This is what happens when you review an awesome, awesome novelist, and he, in turns, shares your work with every single one of his followers.

For the record, Correia has not (to my knowledge) shared a single one of the SPBB posts. Which probably shows either (a) good sense or (b) good taste on his part.

Because let's face it, there are more than enough accusations of conspiracies and such around the Puppies. If Larry shared these? Imagine John Scalzi's head exploding. Because, after all, everybody knows that I'm really Vox Day in disguise ... or mind-controlled by him ... or something stupid like that. I really stop paying attention to these theories after a while.

If Correia wasn't a great writer, he'd probably be popular because he's an awesome person.

He's also someone I would never have discovered without this blog, and selling my books.

10) The Anti-Puppies (Sad Puppies Bite Back VI)
Somehow, we jumped from part III to part VI.  Seriously, it almost feels like Star Wars opening with Episode IV.

Friday, June 19, 2015

Thursday, June 18, 2015

E3 Roundup

If you don't already know, I'm on a blog called The Catholic Geeks.

As opposed to my radio show called the Catholic Geek, singular.

Anyway, I did a whole bunch of blogs on E3 this week, that make for a nice collection of upcoming games.

Enjoy.



Microsoft Opens strong at E3
Halo 5: Guardians
Recore  
New IP
New controllers
Dark Souls III: Die Hardest.
Plants vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare 2
Tom Clancy’s The Division

Rise of the Tomb Raider Gameplay at E3
Dedicated to one game. Only.



Fallout 4 at E3
Yup. Fallout is back.



E3 Is Doomed.
YAWN.  Doom is back



Dishonored ... Again

Super Smash Bros.



The Last Guardian -- new IP .... first announced 8 years ago.
Horizon: Zero Dawn -- new IP
Hitman
Street Fighter V
No Man’s Sky -- new IP
Dreams -- new IP
Firewatch -- new IP
Destiny: The Taken King.
Assassin’s Creed: Syndicate .... sigh.  AGAIN
Final Fantasy 7. The Remake.
Call of Duty: Black Ops III
Star Wars: Battlefront
Uncharted 4
War For Honor -- a new IP
Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon: Wildlands.


...And Star Was: BattleFront



Hitman
Just Cause 3
Rise of the Tomb Raider
Kingdom Hearts
Deus Ex

Xenoblade Chronicles
Star Fox Zero
Super Mario Maker

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Guest Puppy Bites Back

I have apparently inspired fan fiction.  Yes, it will go into the Sad Puppies tag above.

This is either the best fan fic ever, or terrifying beyond belief. :)

This is from Catholic Writer Guild colleague Dawn Wtizke.

The only changes I've made to the SWATting is to make it match the format of previous SWATs. The WorldCon part was only modded for consistency with the other parts...and I added one line.



[SWAT, all two of them, is stationed in front of the apartment door, battering ram at the ready]

“Excuse me.”

[DW approaches] “Can I help you?”

[SWAT #1] “Ma’am, you can’t go in there. We have reports that someone inside is waiving a gun around and threatening to kill people.”

[DW] “Seriously? Get out of my way.”

[The officer, who is at least a foot taller, puffs out his chest, blocking the way]

[DW] "Don’t make me tell you twice. The Hugo Awards are today and I’m damn well not going to miss it. Now get out of my way.”

[SWAT #2 pouts] “But, this is our first call in ten years. Can’t you just let us take a look?”

[DW sighs, rolls her eyes] “Fine. You can look, but you’re not breaking my door in.”

[Opens door. A pile of rifles is stacked haphazardly on a yoga mat. Cleaning supplies scattered next to them.]

[SWAT #1] “Gun!”

[DW glares] “Was that really necessary?”

[SWAT #2 hangs his head] “Sorry. I always wanted to say that.”

[DW] “So, look around.”

[SWAT #1] “Damn. Nothing.”

[DW] “Sorry I couldn’t be the crazy psycho you were hoping for. Are we done?”

[SWAT #2] “We’re done. Sorry to bother you ma’am.”

[SWAT leaves.  DW goes to bookcase and swings it away from the wall, revealing a collection of weapons. She picks up several curved blades and a roll of duct tape.] I’ll need this tonight.






The Catholic Geek: Defending Joss Whedon, E3 Preview


Check Out Culture Podcasts at Blog Talk Radio with We Built That Network on BlogTalkRadio


So, remember the whole bit with Joss Whedon being a misogynist sexist prick?  Then I had a lady friend of mine rip that stupid to pieces?

Now you can meet her.

And, yes, I've kept the cover for my upcoming book in the credits. Because.

Speaking of E3, I've been doing the collected E3 over at The Catholic Geek blog. Click the tab above for more details. I'll see about doing a roundup at the end of the week.

Monday, June 15, 2015

Sad Puppies Bite Back X: X marks the spot

Dear Angry Pussies,

Please stop giving me material to work with.

Thanks, love me.

For those of you who are wondering what has happened to this blog, you're going to want to go to the tabs at the top, click "Sad Puppies" and start from there. This is a very, very long story.

For those of you who are caught up, this offer of peace was posted at 2:09 AM on Friday by puppy kicker "The Cryptkeeper" David Gerrold (Just in case, a blog commenting on it: the blog is posted at nearly noon.)

Apparently, this was posted at 1:09pm THAT SAME DAY (Friday).


Ummm.... so, wait, neither Brad nor Larry commented on your 2am apology, you had angry people still pissed at being called neo-Nazis, and NOT EVEN 11 HOURS LATER you want to play This is War! No, seriously, David, are you brain damaged?

Also, I had promised some SWATting today.

A good swath of this opening was cut by Matthew Bowman, Novel Ninja, who has discovered that the characters just don't STOP talking. Welcome to the party, Matt.

And now, it's time to unleash .... oh, you know by now.

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Nightwish: Crownless

Because Nightwish.

I think I'm Puppied out for this week. Between Irene Gallo being insane, Tom Doherty trying to maintain his publishing company's dignity, and everyone else doubling down on Gallo's inane psychotic break, I think I've had enough time swimming in the psycho end of the gene pool. With any luck, the nutters will take a breath for a few hours.

Give me a few days, okay?  I've got a radio show to record on Sunday, with video games and Joss Whedon, etc, so we'll see what happens.


Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Sad Puppies Bite Back IX: SWATting The Wrong Puppy

For previously on, click the Sad Puppies Link above.

So, I had a conversation with Katie Paulk, the Leader of Sad Puppies 4 in relation so various and sundry topics. While we had this conversation, she corrected a few things about how I SWATted her last time, in episode III.

When I joked that she may have to be SWATted again, she laughed and said sure.

The short version?  This is not the puppy you want to screw with.

Also, I asked Margot St. Aubin if she was interested in joining in. She said sure, why not?


ROUND TWO



[SWAT Captain arrives at the scene of the SWAT call.  There are no impaling stakes, just a house. He has the SWAT van pull up to the house.  He comes out in his dress uniform, the rest of the SWAT team piles out in full armor. The SWAT leader sighs]  A field of stakes, huh?  Give me a break.

[SWAT leader goes up to door. Knocks. It opens to The Impaler, Kate Paulk. She is of sturdy build, round face, brunette.  She smiled, and said with a light Australian accent] Hello, can I help you?

[SWAT leader] Ma'am, my men were here the other day, telling me about a field of impaling stakes, dried with blood?

[KP laughs] Oh, those. They were nothing. I got them used off of ebay -- hence the blood. I returned them. I mean, who sharpens them?  Ideally stakes aren't sharp. They're well-rounded and greased / oiled to make the experience last longer.

[SWAT leader nods slowly, and says with forced casualness] Oh, really?

[KP nods pleasantly]  The main reason I don't impale people is that it's so hard to get the blood and stuff out of the carpet, you know?

[SWAT leader looks over her shoulder] To address the phone call we got, there is no one around here waving a weapon around?

[KP laughs] Not for days. My husband isn't here right now, and sword sparring is on Fridays. And, damn it, the Evil Lord of Evil keeps luring my minions away, so I'm left with the cats. Okay, they're dangerous enough, but still, stupid Vox...

[SWAT leader] So, the short version is that you don't have any weapons around here aside from swords?

[KP smiles] Didn't say that.

[KP points to a button inside the doorframe.  It is a great big threatening button that must never ever ever be pushed -- it says that on the label underneath the button] In case of emergencies.  It's amazing what you can do when you used to be a software tester.

[SWAT leader] So, not for us, then?

[KP blinks.  Her speech is a little slurred now, almost like she's drunk] Nope. Not at all.

[SWAT leader]  Are you okay?

[KP] I'm narco...leptic. This happens.

[SWAT leader] Maybe we should

[KP falls forward against the inside of the doorframe, squashing big red threatening button]

[SWAT leader] Oh darn.

[Hilarity ensues. As do screaming. Running. Explosions. And flying Impaling stakes.]

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

My Radio Career has Begun! Really, this time


Check Out Culture Podcasts at Blog Talk Radio with We Built That Network on BlogTalkRadio


So, this happened.

Yes, I seem to say that a lot.

Welcome to the premiere episode of The Catholic Geek, starring the Novel Ninja, and Lori Janeski. With a host who was relatively irrelevant, except that he just kept talking for the first fifteen minutes in the hope that he could monologue; some idiot named Declan Finn.

Yes, I'm hosting a radio show. Fun fun fun.

Blog talk radio is relatively easy to work with, and nothing went kablooey.... yes, it's a word, I looked it up.

Anyway. I think we did well. We counted nine comic book shows, went over the attacks on Joss Whedon, Sad Puppies, Daredevil, Pope Francis, Sens8, and anything else we thought we could jam into the show.

Over all, ka'pla. Or kreplach... No, I didn't pass Klingonese. :)

And next week, I do it again. 

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Minions of the Puppy Kickers (Sad Puppies Bite Back part VIII)


Previously on Sad Puppies Bite Back....
Sad Puppies I -- In which I ponder what happens if Larry Correia, Brad Torgerson, or Sarah Hoyt were SWATed
Sad Puppies II -- With Tom Kratman, John Ringo, David Weber, and Tom Knighton
Sad Puppies III -- The Puppies come to World Con
Sad Puppies IV -- The Puppies of World Con
Sad Puppies V -- A Puppy Wins a Hugo
Sad Puppies VI -- The Anti-Puppies
Sad Puppies VII -- Putting Down The Puppies (with the Anti-Puppies.)
More updates in the Sad Puppies Tab above

The nice thing about social media?  It is an infinite source of stupid. It really is.

For example, there is a guy who works for Tor Books named Moshe Feder.  He seems to have no other job but to troll Sad Puppies on Facebook and blogs. According to the grapevine, he's a special snowflake who must only deal with A-listers like Brandon Sanderson ... who, apparently, doesn't actually need an editor. Take from that what you will.

I watched on of his endless tirades on Facebook spiral out of control into a hate fest of epic proportions, where friends of mine were attacked, I was attacked, I went a few rounds with David Gerrold -- who really does scream Vox Day a lot -- and who smashed down on my Bruce Banner button.

Then they went after another friend of mine, Sherry Antonetti, she of The Book of Helen.  I have very, very, very few friends. I love my friends. Touch my friends, you lose your fingers.

Then there was this.



Yeah.  Irene Gallo is a creative director at Tor. I wonder if that translates as political officer.

Also: Does she realize that these "bad to reprehensible works" INCLUDE BOOKS BY TOR ITSELF?  Seriously, does she not want to work anymore? Did she not read that part of the talking points?  Teh stupid! It burns, precious!

Her response to critique? Cat photos.



According to Brad Torgersen...
Apropos of the Irene Gallo ridiculousness. It's been said that a letter from a consumer is worth 100 angry rants on the internet.
the Macmillan code of conduct:
The exercise of good judgment is still expected from employees at all times.
• Could this conduct be viewed as dishonest, unethical or unlawful?
• Could this conduct hurt Macmillan – e.g., could it cause us to lose credibility with customers or business
• partners?
• Could this conduct hurt other people – e.g., other employees or customers?
• Would I be embarrassed to see this conduct reported in the newspaper?
John Sargent, CEO, Macmillan US
john.sargent@hbpub.com
rhonda.brown@macmillan.com (Code of Conduct compliance)
Tom Doherty, Publisher, Tor Books
tom.doherty@tor.com
Sophie Portas, Fiction Publicity Manager s.portas@macmillan.co.uk
Anyway, I'm not angry now.  In fact, that particular fracas was days ago. Probably days by the time this is actually posted.

But puppy food is a dish best served cold.


TOR OFFICES, NEW YORK CITY

[Teresa "Long Knives" Nielsen Hayden lays back in her office chair, tapping away at a laptop, explaining why the Evil League of Evil was just soooo evil, and the Friends of Sweetness and Light were just too good and pure to be considered "Puppy Kickers."] How do you spell insidious?

[The desk next to hers is her husband, Patrick "Hearst" Nielsen Hayden, throwing darts at a board with Larry Correia's photo on it.  It is, of course, a palatial space, and he misses most of the time. One dart heads right between Correia's eyes, then stops in mid-air, and then falls, seemingly scared of a photo of the International Lord of Hate.] Blast it.  It's spelled with three "i"s.

[TNH nods]  Got it. Must be consistent. It's not like there's one word that says "racist bigoted misogynistic homophobe."

[PNH] You mean it isn't "Vox"?

[They both laugh politely.]

[PNH] So, how goes the war on Puppies?

[TNH] I don't know. I'd have to ask. Igor! Igor!

[Moshe Feder limps in.  He is cloaked in a thick, black, hooded cloak, so he can avoid sparkling in the daylight.]  Yeth, mathster?

[TNH] Are you done spamming Brad's Facebook pages and blog posts?

[MF nods like, well, an eager puppy] Yeth, mathster! Yeth!  I've even gone after them for calling us CHORFs!

[TNH] Yes! How dare the puppies make fun of us, even a little.

[PNH] Yes. It's not like we don't have a sense of humor, but still.

[TNH]  No dear, don't you remember? We had ours surgically removed some time ago.

[PNH] Oh yes, quite right dear. So sorry.

[MF nods eagerly] I have retaliated by calling them talentless hacks. My mindless followers call them hillbillies, even the ones from New York City!

[TNH smiles] Good.  And if you're well-behaved, we'll make certain that you do nothing but edit the big name authors like Sanderson -- the ones who do their own editing. Fail, and you'll only get to play with the mid-listers.

[MF flinches, like a vampire flashed a crucifix] No! Not that! I'll be good, mathster.

[PNH glowers] And if you really screw up, we'll hand you over to Vox Day, just like we're doing with Irene Gallo.

[TNH nods] Yes, how DARE she say that our books are bad!

[PNH] Reprehensible!

[They say as one] DON'T SCREW IT UP!

[MF] I have a minion who will state that women were only allowed on their ballot because the Puppies approved it!

[The Haydens exchange a look.  TNH asks] What does that even mean?

[MF] Whatever we say, mathster. No one questions uth.

[TNH] Has anyone mentioned how we've just given a white male like Scalzi a $3.4 million advance on books that may not even break $2 million?

[MF shakes his head vehemently] Of courth not! He'th one of uth! No one talks of it!

[TNH] Good. I would hate it if it looks like we're paying him off for his work on kicking the puppies.

[PNH and TNH share a polite fake laugh]

[MF] And we have David Gerrold chime in every once in a while and scream of Vox Day!

[TNH frowns] One day, we have to get him to speak in whole sentences again.  Speaking of, any word from Vox?

[Pat Hayden checks his emails] Awww, he's making fun of us. I just got a press release sent out from his composite steel throne on the Geyser of Faithful Tears.

[TNH pats him on the head] Don't worry.  Moshe's a better fan than all of those big bad bullies put together, aren't they?

[MF smiles] Torgersen has given us a great idea! We can twitter bomb JJ Abrams for the racist, sexist, cisnormative Hell-hole that will be Star Wars episode VII.

[PH]  Brilliant!  Wait, how many ideas do you steal from the puppies?

[MF looks off into the distance, whistling innocently]

[TNH, to Moshe] Igor, make sure that nothing can be traced back to us, will you? We'd rather not the great and powerful owner get wind of it. He may get the wrong idea.

[MF] But I thought we can post what whatever we want, precious.

[TNH arches a brow] Wrong genre, Igor...

[MF] Sorry mathster.

[TNH] Well, *we* can't say anything, but you can. Because you're special canon fodder.  By the way, how goes the efforts by our supporters to SWAT the Puppies?

[MF] Well...

Friday, June 5, 2015

Batman: Arkham Knight Gameplay

You know what? This just looks like plain old simple FUN.  And it looks amazingly awesome.

And it looks like Poison Ivy's default position is cynical and snarky as Captain Cold .... you know, when she's not being a simple straightforward eco-psycho. And, really, I'm good with that.

Anyway, it's Friday.  The radio show goes on Sunday, and I have to see if I can stay calm in the next 84 hours.


Thursday, June 4, 2015

Amaranthe - Amaranthine

Just music today. I have to get a radio show up and running on Sunday, remember?  And, after doing two posts yesterday, completely by accident, I am officially out of new content right this minute.

Enjoy.

This one is a new group, Amaranthe -- yes, like the Nightwish song. It's a relatively new group on me. The lead singer is stunning. Great voice. But, be wary of the volume here. There's some death metal-like singing in here that jumps out at you.


Wednesday, June 3, 2015

HONOR AT STAKE, COMING SEPT 1

Yup, that's the announcement. My vampire novel, Honor At Stake,  is coming out on September first of this year.  And I'm doing another announcement on The Catholic Geek this Sunday, but whatever.

If you don't remember this book, I don't blame you. I haven't talked about it all that often. It's the vampire novel with Catholic philosophy and metaphysics, jammed together with every traditional myth about vampires, for an interesting little mash-up.

Oh,  here's one of the better parts of being an author with, of all things, a real publishing house.

I have a to-order cover.


I love that tag line. I really do.  Funny enough, they added the ellipses there, though editorial policy in the editing of the books is to have a small fatwa on them. It works for me.

I'm actually kind of happy that they chose this one.  Because it wasn't number one.  I had put in several.
1: One is a heartless, merciless killer. The other's a vampire.
2: Vampires in New York? They came to the wrong town.
3: Welcome to New York City, where vampires don't sparkle. They burn.
4: There are certain parts of Brooklyn vampires should not invade. 
5: And you thought Brooklyn was only dangerous at night.
They picked #3. That tells you that I have so found the right people.

This is more or less the finished cover. All-in-all, I'm really happy with this.  At a later date, I'll start working on a post that will show you the evolution of this cover, but for now, I'm going to just smile and say "oohh, shiny."

As a freshman in college, Amanda Colt knows few people, and wants to know fewer still. She enjoys fencing, and prefers to face a challenge every once in a while. She is beautiful, and smart, and possibly the most interesting person on campus … and most people stop after the first adjective.
Then she finds Marco Catalano in her fencing class. He is tall, not unattractive, and he is very, very intense. With a mind like a computer and manners of a medieval knight, he scares most people. Except Amanda.
She lives in a nice apartment in the mid-70s, on Manhattan's Upper East side, and has an impressive array of weapons collected by her family over the past century. 
He lives in a brownstone in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, and runs two street gangs. 
They never see each other in daylight. 
They don't want to date each other 
And they both have secrets, for they are both monsters.

As the two of them draw closer, they each have to find the line between how much they can trust each other, and how much they can care for each other. For each one carries a secret that can destroy the other. One is a dark, monstrous fiend who enjoys killing, and the other's a vampire. 
But they must come to grips with their personal drama soon, because a darkness is rising. Bodies are turning up all over New York, and an army of vampires is closing in on all sides. They have only one hope. 
Each other.

Yes, yes, I'm told the opening may be too wordy, and I might be talking about too many little details along the way. 

Oh yes, and Come now, Declan, another dark, dangerous character, isn't Sean Ryan enough?  Sean is a strange, strange man who really enjoys his job, but unless you actively annoy him, he doesn't go out of his way to harm anybody.  He's the sane one.

So, what's next? Does this book cover herald a new era in which the blog shuts down?  Nope.

Fall television is here -- already

NOTE: I WILL HAVE MY OWN RADIO SHOW, THE CATHOLIC GEEK, STARTING JUNE 7TH.



Fall television is here ... in fact, SPRING television is here. 2016 already has trailers.

First up .... Lucifer?


Yes, you saw that correctly, this is a real thing. Lucifer is bored with running Hell, so he moved to LA. How he can tell the difference is beyond me.

Anyway, Lucifer is also fed up with vice directly affecting those around him, so he's going to help the LAPD.

I'm not sure if this is inspired or a train wreck in the making. The side of my that likes bright shiny things is going "How many in-jokes and references to Dante can they make?" The side of me that has a degree in Catholic philosophy is going "My brain hurts, precious."

Apparently, this is based off of a comic book. Which just goes to show that comics are even stranger than you ever thought they might be.

However, two things. 1) I have no problem with him being vaguely British. 2) Why is Sympathy for the Devil not playing over this trailer?

Blindspot


First of all, if the actress looks familiar, picture her with long hair. With battle armor.  And a Valkyrie.  Yes, this is lady Sif from the Marvel movie universe, Jamie Alexander. I guess somebody saw her on Agents of SHIELD and said "She looks good on tv .... and she stole the episodes. We can forgive the petty larceny."

However, someone covered in tattoos, each of them telling a story. There's a part of my brain that's saying "Wasn't this The Illustrated Man by Ray Bradbury?"

While I find the premise intriguing enough to give it a go, my gut reaction is "This is going to go the route of Lost, isn't it?"

Then there's The Player.


My first thought is "Wasn't this a satiric Tim Robbins movie about a Hollywood producer?"

My second thought is "Why is Wesley Snipes employed on television? Did the IRS really nail him for that much?"

Theoretically? This could be fun.

Realistically? I'll see what it's opposite of before I invest.

Also .... more pre-crime stuff? Curse you, Person of Interest, for starting everyone on this again!

Speaking of pre-crime.

Monday, June 1, 2015

My new Radio Show: The Catholic Geek

Yup. No joke this time. I'm not even a guest star. This is happening.  I will have my own radio show, The Catholic Geek, Starting this Sunday, June 7th, from 7pm-9pm, EST.

The fact that the radio show happens to share the exact same name to the blog that I'm now contributing to?  Yeah, not even a little bit of a coincidence.

The fact that my first two guests are the founders of said website?  Slightly more of a coincidence.

One of the two guests is the Novel Ninja, Matthew Bowman, who I briefly "SWATted" during the latter end of the Sad Puppies war.

As you can tell from the title of the show, I'm going to be covering topics that are either nerd or Catholic related.  This of course means that I will never, ever cover politics .... And if you believe that one, I'm sorry. I am so, so sorry.

Some of this schedule is a work in progress, but I will be updating these as we go along.





June 28
I will have co-host Karina Fabian, and a panel on Infinite Space, Infinite God

July 5th
Steph Souders
Catholic images and themes in Babylon 5, the fiction of C.S. Lewis, and a retrospective on A Canticle for Leibowitz.

July 12th
Vanessa Landry, a report on LibertyCon.

July 19th

Ava Armstrong -- military technology.