World Building Wednesday: Prioritizing

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Hey Space Cadets, how’s everyone doing today?  I’m good, I will finish Operation Breakout today and I’m super excited about it.  I’m already working on where book four will go, and I’ve some fun ideas.  We’ve tentatively titled book four Maternal Vengeance. For those of you who’ve read The Human Legion Series, you’ll see the culmination of a plot thread started by author Tim C. Taylor.  I’ve also submitted a short story to an anthology, as I’ve previously mentioned, and was invited to another anthology. I’ll tell you more about that as the details emerge, but I promise it’ll be soon.

 

Now, on to today’s World Building Wednesday topic, prioritizing your writing.  What do I mean by this?  Well, as creative people it’s easy to get distracted by the bright shiny idea. That next story, the next series can all pull you away from your work in progress and leave you starting millions of projects without finishing anything.  I try to resist this temptation, power through it, roll over it like it was the Maginot Line in the 1930’s!  Why?  Because I can’t send ideas and half-finished manuscripts to my editor and I certainly can’t publish them.

 

My solution, stolen from other authors who I’ve chatted with and writing podcasts I’ve listened too is simple.  Use your motivation for the next shiny thing to push you to finish your current work in progress.  Let the boredom with the current idea motivate you to be innovate and come up with ways to reinvigorate the story for your readers.  If it bores you, maybe it would bore them and you don’t want to lose your readers.

 

What about the rest of you out there in the Handley Trenches?  How do you prioritize your works in progress?  Do you write one project at a time, or are you one of those special souls who can write multiple projects simultaneously?  I would love to hear from you in the comments below, so don’t be afraid to sound off!

 

 

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

brown_bess

JR

 

 –> As usual, all images came from the Google’s “labeled for reuse” section or are videos used by JR Handley for use under the Fair Use Doctrine.

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This is why we can’t have nice things!

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Hey Space Cadets, I saw this video and HAD to share it with you!  And to my fellow veterans, do you wanna know why we can’t have nice things?  This is why we can’t have nice things!!

 

 

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

brown_bess

JR

 –> As usual, all images came from the Google’s “labeled for reuse” section or are videos used by JR Handley for use under the Fair Use Doctrine.

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Marine Monday: Half Compass Point Formation

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Hey Space Cadets, how are you today? I’m great, and only have four chapters left in Operation Breakout.  I finished my short story submission to the Roswell Anthology, which after a quick edit will be submitted to Tickety Boo Press, Ltd. tomorrow.  I was invited to another anthology, which will be written with a co-author, and outlined it as well!  It’s top secret for now, and we will tell you about it at some point in the future.  Anyway, life is good!

 

Now, onto today’s topic! Today’s Marine Monday is a continuation of last week’s discussion about combat tactics in an interstellar universe. If you missed it, read about the Compass Point Formation here. You really missed out, I’m not trying to make you feel guilty, but if you do…maybe that’s the universe telling you to check in on my blog more regularly!

 

So, the tactics of void combat! Such tactics require fighting men and women to consider things in this spherical manner instead of on a plane. It’s not just what is above you and around you, now it’s what’s below you and around you as well. This obviously means that future warriors will have to be even more alert than their modern counterparts. Further, the cost for making mistakes escalates when you are discussing combat in the vacuum of space. The Void is a harsh and unforgiving place where only the strong survive, which necessitates the creation of new and constantly evolving tactics for the battlefield. What works today, might not work tomorrow.

 

How do we know all of this?  Well, today we have another excerpt from one of the manuals purloined by our LegionLeaks hero!  Take a peak, before they come for us and it disappears forever!

 

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One of the afore mentioned tactics is the Half Compass Point Formation. Interested in knowing more?  Well, read the excerpt from their manual, and give it a quick look over!

half-compass-point-descriptionhmfmanual_halfcompasspointformation3

 

Hopefully this will whet your appetite for me, and if so you should pop on back next week where we look at another combat formation!

 

 

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

brown_bess

JR

 

 –> As usual, all images came from the Google’s “labeled for reuse” section or are videos used by JR Handley for use under the Fair Use Doctrine.

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Indie SciFy Video #2

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Hey Space Cadets, today I wanted to bring you some awesome little science fiction films.  They’re indie productions, but still worth the watch!  I plan on posting one every Sunday to entertain you while I’m buried deep in my bunker working on Operation Breakout.

 

 

 

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

brown_bess

JR

 

  –> As usual, all images came from the Google’s “labeled for reuse” section or are videos used by JR Handley for use under the Fair Use Doctrine.

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FREE Audio Books!

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An excellent post on ways to find affordable reading solutions! Food for thought people!

Hall & Beaulieu

I absolutely love to read. Like, I love it. I have read nearly 30 books already since the beginning of the year. That’s almost a book a day.

That’s pretty much impossible for someone like me who works full-time has a wife and a two year old—not to mention I am an author and we have a novel being released next month (Brother Dust: The Resurgence). So how?

Audio Books!

Some of you just checked out of the conversation because audiobooks are super-dang expensive. Right? When have you last looked on Audible? Some of those jokers are like $25! For a book!

So, I am a pastor and an indie author which means I’m not banking. So clearly, I’m not spending $20-25 for books 30 times a month.

I’m not selling anything other than the joy of reading. I have found gold and I wanna share it. If…

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World Building Wednesday: Pulp Speed Writing

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Hey Space Cadets, how’s everyone doing today?  I’m doing great, making progress towards finishing Operation Breakout this week and getting into the production cue for my editorial team.  When I know when we have a release date, you can bet I’ll let you know so let’s move on to more exciting topics.  Like I’ve mentioned before, I’m a huge fan of The Dead Robots Society Podcast because it has been very helpful for me.  The proprietors of that fine establishment are willing to bend over backwards to help, all you’ve gotta do is ask.  Preferably in the Facebook Forum! Why do I mention this?  Because it gave me the topic for today’s post.

 

Okay, so for today’s World Building Wednesday we are talking about pulp writing.  My goal when I started writing was to write genre fiction. I have no allusions that my work is high literature, or that it will ever be taught in a classroom setting. I am an unknown unashamed pulp writer, and all I want to do is tell entertaining stories. As quickly as I can, as often as I can.

 

Author, and one of our generations current pulp writers, Dean Wesley Smith defines pulp writers through several criteria.  You have to writes at least 1 million words a year, those words are words which are published. Obviously, if you run your own social media or blog you will write way more. But the only million words to count are ones that’re stories you sell. Another criterion of his was you have to write every day, for the entire year. I tend to like and agree with his approach.

 

But how does somebody do that?  Write so quick, published so much?  I know the first thing you have to do is adopt the Michael Anderle model.  You have what he calls a minimally viable product, which you get to market as quickly as you can.  What is a minimally viable product?  For me, or at least as I apply it on my own work, this means that I accept that the story is King.  I can’t obsess over every word, every sentence, or every paragraph.  At the end of the day, the stories keying in the rest is just details.  This means that when I finish a book, while I love the characters and the setting, I have to put it out of my mind and move on to the next story.  Because let’s face it, there’s always another story, another adventure waiting to happen.

 

 

Is this approach for everyone?  No, probably not, but writing, like life, is an individual journey.  I’ll save you the sappiness, and acknowledge that we walk that journey with friends and family, but in the end, we stand alone.  We are responsible for our actions, and ours alone. It’s a harsh reality that I learned in the Army, one that has followed me into my civilian life.  I think it was the sort of mentality which allowed our ancestors to face the unknown and wander into the sunset.  Maybe I’m wrong, only time will tell.  What about you, are you a pulp writer too?

 

 

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

brown_bess

 JR

 

 –> As usual, all images came from the Google’s “labeled for reuse” section.

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Pulp Resources:

January Book Cover of the Month Sweet 16

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If you love a pretty book cover, you really should vote in this months Clash of the Covers!! And hey, this time you can share who you voted for! 😛

M.L.S. Weech

january-cover-displayswt16The Sweet 16 is here!

32 covers came in, and your votes have cut them down to 16. And BOY DID YOU VOTE! I’m thrilled! Last month, the bracket received a total of 137 votes, and I was over the moon. This month has already received ten times that number in the first round. As I type this (a few hours from midnight), there were  1,054 votes cast.

Let’s go over some numbers:

The Closest Contest:
That would be Upside Down vs Indelible.  Only five votes separated Upside Down from Indelible. This was my personal favorite bracket. I honestly feel guilty for putting those two up against each other in the first round. I assure you, this wasn’t by diabolical design. Honestly, I was just tossing them in the bracket as I came to them. Still, it was a great contest.

In terms of margin of victory, the…

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Operation Outbreak Snippet #1

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Hey Space Cadets, how are you doing?  I’m doing good, rolling through the main battle sequence for Operation Breakout and excited to get it to my editor.  I know I need to make a blog post, lest the raving fans storm my trenches and seize my flag… wait, or was that a game?  Hmm, capture the flag anyone?  Anyway, what was I saying?  Right, I wanted to give you a blog post worth reading. 

 

Today, I decided to give you a snippet from one of the many battle segments of the book.  In order to understand it, you just need to know that the main character is Colonel Lance Scipio and he’s about to mess up some enemy Hardits.  Or is he?  I dunno, I’m feeling kind of stabby, so maybe I kill the main character and go back to the drawing board for book four!  Mwahahaha, I guess you’ll have to read and find out!  Anyway, on to the snippet!

 

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Hope you enjoyed the fragment of my unedited manuscript!  If you’re feeling friendly you could leave a comment, start a conversation!

 

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

brown_bess

JR

 

 –> As usual, all images came from the Google’s “labeled for reuse” section, or are owned by JR Handley.

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A Call for Beta Readers

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Part of my editing team is looking for beta readers, if you’re interested you should check it out!

North of Andover

We’ll be needing beta readers soon.

Yes, that’s right: beta readers, plural. We’ve decided it’s not fair to LR to make him shoulder the responsibility alone. Also, we want to know how readers unfamiliar with the author’s other works will react to this story.

But wait! Before you volunteer, you should know a thing or two about this novel… and about the amount of work involved in beta reading: Project Brimstone is contemporary science fiction and runs about 70K words, so reading won’t take too long. However, I have a list of about forty questions I need beta readers to answer, such as, ‘Are there any parts you think should be condensed or deleted?’ and, ‘Could you relate to the main character?’ Volunteers to beta read must be willing to answer these questions.

Here’s the (unofficial) blurb:

Major John Michael Harrison, US SOCOM, discovers a dark secret: an invasion from another Earth, a world like yet…

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