Shenanigans and Updates

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Hello Space Cadets, how is everyone doing?  I’m well, so is my grandmother!  Thank you, truly, to everyone who sent their happy thoughts into the ethos for my Grandma Handley, it meant a lot.  As a quick update, I should (fingers crossed) have the new look for my website up within the week.  Once it is up, I will let everyone know what is going on with that.  We should seamlessly merge it into this page, since I bought the domain and a premium account from WordPress.  If it doesn’t work as planned, I will direct everyone where to go… but I hope it isn’t necessary.

Here is a quick look at where I want my blog to go.  While I work on getting my professional looking blog and a few articles in every category cued up, I will continue on as I have been.  I have to coordinating with the authors I hope to interview, prepare the questions I want to ask and generally be prepared so I don’t look like a boot recruit.  If any of you have any general questions for the warrior authors or the family series, post them in the comments!

  1. Marine Monday’s: A series of world building from the Human Legion Universe, to include my own Sleeping Legion.
  2. World Building Wednesdays: A series of posts on my writing process, not necessarily the right or best way, just my way.  Dang, now I want some Burger King!
  3. Family Fridays Interview Series: A series of interviews with other writers, editors, agents and anyone else involved in the wild world of books.  The focus will be on how we manage our passion for the written word and our duties to our kinfolk.
  4. Warrior Writer Weekend Interview Series: A series of interviews with veterans who write, edit or have any other role within the wild world of books.  I will try to publish these on Saturday, but the guarantee is that it will post on a weekend!  I want to highlight their service, reflect upon how it has influenced or affected their works and get all fanboy over their stuff!  There could be overlap, as many veterans who write also have families, but the focus here will be their service and writing.
  5. Funny Fill Ins: Basically, I’ll keep the witty and humorous bent that I’ve had so far.  If it doesn’t fit into another category I will post it on a Tuesday, Thursday or on an open weekend day.  I will also post any reblogs on these days as well.

 

Until next time, stay frosty and don’t forget to keep your powder dry!

Image result for musketsJR

–> As usual, all images are found under Google’s “labeled for reuse” section.

Black Cat Blue Sea Award

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What is Black Cat Blue Sea Award?

“This award is for bloggers who strive to write for everybody, and no matter how many viewers they get, make an impact on a reader. This award is an expression of gratitude to the nominee. It should be awarded to anybody that you choose deserves it and it doesn’t mean that they must have hundreds of followers and likes” – Ella

WrittenInGeek, thank you again for nominating me for an award, especially one like this. Go check out her blog, and the blogs of the nominees that I will be mentioning.

The Rules

  1. Anybody nominated can nominate eight other bloggers.
  2. The nominee answers three questions posed by the nominator.
  3. The questions you ask while nominating can be any three questions.
  4. If any of the questions asked are offensive or the nominee simply does not want to answer, the nominee does not have to answer them to earn the award.

Here are my answers:

1.What are your all time 5 favourite quotes?

I tend to love the quotes of Marcus Aurelius, he’s got a lot of good ones!!  Here are just a few that speak to me! 🙂

  • “Everything we hear is an opinion, not a fact. Everything we see is a perspective, not the truth.”
  • “You have power over your mind – not outside events. Realize this, and you will find strength.”
  • “When you arise in the morning, think of what a precious privilege it is to be alive – to breathe, to think, to enjoy, to love.”
  • “Very little is needed to make a happy life; it is all within yourself, in your way of thinking.”
  • “That which is not good for the bee-hive cannot be good for the bees.”

 

2. If you had a different name, would you be a different person?

I definitely think that there is merit to the idea, since it would mean our life had changed.  As we are a product of both our environment, the sum of our past, changing something at birth (i.e. the name) COULD change the course of our lives events.  If my name was SANTA CLAUS, might I not end up growing to hate Christmas?  If I hated Christmas, then maybe I would not celebrate it and in then I wouldn’t grow up to create the next big revolution to Christmas lights which would then revolutionize the whole lighting industry!  OR maybe I should’ve waited to answer until AFTER my morning coffee!

 

3.What is your favorite music/song? Please give me a link! Would love to listen to your favs!

I love music, heck I was even a band nerd in high school and college, so my favorite tends to be whatever fits my mood at the time.  Right now its the traditional English folk tune “Over the Hills and Far Away” performed by John Tams.

 

Now on to my nominations…. well, heck I nominate anyone who wants to answer a few silly questions!  So should you choose to accept this mission and share this, please answer the same questions posted above.  🙂

Thanks again everyone for your support!

Insider Baseball

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Hello Space Cadets, how is everyone doing?  I’m well, road weary but alive.  I wanted to introduce you to an author whose military science fiction I enjoy, Paul Corcoran.  If you look him up on Amazon it’s PP Corcoran, but still the same chap!  He is a military veteran of Her Majesty’s Armed Forces, so he adds flavor to his works that is fun for those of us from ‘across the pond’ to read.  Paul is the author of several books, including the Amazon best-selling science fiction Saiph Series: Discovery of the Saiph, Search for the Saiph and most recently Hunt for the Saiph.

Image result for PP Corcoran author

Paul grew up in the British Army having joined at just 17 ½ years old and spent the next twenty plus years there while devouring any and all science fiction he could get his hands on. Post army he stayed in the security and intelligence worlds and with more time on his hands put his military skills and his experiences to good use by combining them with his lifetime love of sci-fi to create stories of space marines, space battles and fantastic technologies for reader’s enjoyment (and his own).  With the success of his début Saiph series Paul has turned his one-time hobby into a job and now concentrates on writing, much to the horror of his wife who puts up with him at home on a full-time basis.

If this sounds like your cup of tea, head on over and check it out!  And if you want some of that insider baseball I talked about, listen to Paul talk about how he wrote his latest story, a short story in the Explorations Through The Wormhole anthology by Woodbridge Press.

Check out the YouTube Interview:

Until next time, stay frosty and don’t forget to keep your powder dry!

JR

When Novellas Grow Up

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When Novellas grow up to become Novels

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Hello my fellow Space Cadets!  I thought I would write a quick post about my first novel, The Sleeping Legion: The Legion Awakes, and how I got here.  I didn’t start out trying to write novels, in fact, my contract was specifically for novellas that hit the adventure quick, fast, and in a hurry.

However, as I wrote the ideas just sort of grew organically until my novella grew up into a novel.  As I worked on the final scenes for part two I couldn’t help but hear the song “It is the book the never ends, it just goes on and on my friend… Some fool started writing it not know what it was, and he’ll continue writing it forever just because it was the book that never ends…”  You’re sing along aren’t you?

Knowing I couldn’t put it off any longer, I went to my boss with my hat clutched in hand.  I told Tim C. Taylor about my problem of not knowing what, and how, to cut things to the appropriate length.  He read through my rough draft, likely expecting to talk a novice off the metaphorical edge, then sent me a short email that started with the sentence, “JR, we need to talk.

For clarification, I’m a married man and those words often spell my doom.  As you can imagine, I was justifiably nervous.  I heard Tim, in his proper British accent, saying those five words like a judge condemning a man to his demise.  We meshed schedules, synced up our time zone disparities, and planned our Skype session.

On the day of the Skype session, his face was serious as he looked at me through our shared monitor.  After a moment, he said “JR, you aren’t writing the novellas we talked about in our contract–”

Tim didn’t get to finish as I verbally prostrated myself at his feet, telling him I could do better.  I wasn’t sure if I was laying it on thick enough, I needed him to know I was sincere.  I heaped on some more until I couldn’t be heard over the sound of his laughter.  I took a breath and looked at the cruel man who was likely going to burn my dreams.  I imagined him holding a match and burning the manuscript before my eyes.

Then, to my surprise, Tim said, “JR, these are novels.  Keep writing, but we need a new contract.”

And there I was, suddenly a novelist.  I guess in the end, it’s not the destination you chart but the adventures had along the way.

Until next time, stay frosty and remember to keep your powder dry.

Image result for muskets

 

JR

–> As usual, all images are found under Google’s “labeled for reuse” section.

Honest Honey, It’s Research!

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Honest Honey, it’s research:

Or Why writers pull apart owl pellets to inspect the bones within.

 

One of the reasons I landed the contract to write a spin-off series in The Human Legion Universe was because I was active in the fan forums and on Tim C. Taylors blog.  As part of the process, I’ve had to research a lot of weird things and even some cringe worthy one.  See my article about my run-in with the law because someone heard me interviewing a nurse over the phone and thought I was planning mass murder!  LOL!!  Luckily it ended well… and not with me on the evening news!

 

Seriously though, one of the best parts of being a writer is the ability to follow these rabbit trails to places unknown.  When I read a book about the history of clowns or vampire deer, I don’t KNOW if I will use it in a book but I might.  So it becomes an issue of constantly learning and growing as an individual.  This growth allows you to flavor your worlds and stories in unique and unexpected ways.  My friend and fellow author, Tim C. Taylor recently did a blog post on this very topic.  Part of this title came from his post, so go on over and check it out!  You’ll be glad you did… and say hey while you are there because your momma taught you manners! So go ahead, click the link below… I TRIPLE DOG DARE YOU!

 

Why writers pull apart owl pellets to inspect the bones within

 

–> As usual, all images are found from Googles cache of open source images.

HAPPY UPDATE!

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First, I have to tell you I’ll likely go MIA for a week or two as I address some family issues.  My grandmother, who inspired this pen name, isn’t doing well so I’m driving north like a good grandson should.  Fret not, I will try to write some good posts… however, I’ll be less active on others blogs.  I’ll miss the great posts, so don’t get abducted by aliens while I’m away.  Coming back to your great posts will keep me motivated not to fall asleep while driving.  And never fear, my house will be protected!

 

Secondly, Team Handley will be updating our site soon for a more polished look.  We already own the domain name, so now it is all about figuring out the technical bits.  Worst case scenario, we bring in ‘the professionals’ to get it right but we hope to do it ourselves.

 

Finally, the happy note that I led with.  For those of you who’re friends with me on Facebook will know, my paperback proof of book one came in on Wednesday!!  I’m super excited, and you should be too!!!  Until next time, be safe out there and remember… if you can’t be good, be good at it.

 

–> The artwork from today is original content created by Corey at the Quintessential Editor.

Indie Author Day

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For all you crazy cats who write, spilling your soul onto parchment in the age old manner of our ancestor, check out the Indie Author Day events all over the country.  I’m lucky enough to live in Tidewater, Virginia so I’ll get to hear author Chris Kennedy speak but the rest of you can join the fun at your local chapters. Find your local event, join the party!

 

INDIE AUTHOR DAY:

  1. Virginia Beach, VA
  2. Everywhere else

 

Contact Chris Kennedy:

  1. Amazon
  2. Webpage

 

–> As usual, this picture was found on Google and is labeled for reuse.  It was posted by The Blue Diamond Gallery, go on down and check them out.