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Showing posts from September, 2022

A Couple of Book Announcements

🤖 Domo Arigato... Hey everybody, I've got a couple of book announcements to make. So lately when people ask me what I write, I've just been saying that I write "mostly silly stories about robots". Which is more or less true. And I've come to realize that a lot of my stories just aren't readily available. They're paywalled, or they're in an anthology that's out of print, or they've succumbed to link rot, etc. I tried the reprint markets without much success (read: any  success) and it occurred to me that I have enough of them that I could just package them up in an ebook and make them available that way--especially if I could come up with a witty title and find an adequately adorable cover at a reasonable price. So with all of that said, I'm putting out an ebook of short stories with an adorable cover and a witty title. This will be coming out... soon. I need to make sure everything in there is out of exclusivity, and I want to put a few no

Memory Leaks: Super Mario Land 2: 6 Golden Coins

🪙 They Wanna Get My Gold On The Ceiling... Super Mario Land 2: 6 Golden Coins  was the sequel to Super Mario Land , making it the second proper game in the Mario  franchise released for the Nintendo Game Boy. It directly followed Super Mario World  for the Super Nintendo and introduced the world to Wario, who would not only be an enduring villain for Nintendo, but a character who would have multiple franchises in his own right. How I Remember It... You ever wonder why the bundled title for Game Boy systems wasn't one of Nintendo's first-party games? Think about it. You own the IP for Mario, Zelda, Donkey Kong, and Metroid, and when you debut a handheld system, the thing you package with it is... Tetris . A puzzle game that tons of people already had on their computers, that was being simultaneously released for the Nintendo console. That's  what you bundle as the killer app for your new handheld system. Why would you do that? I'll tell you why. It's because Tetris

Find Me At Archon 45

📛 Power Overwhelming... Hey everybody, Next weekend, September 30 - October 2, is Archon 45, a science fiction and fantasy conference held in Collinsville, Illinois. I'm going to be there appearing on and moderating panels, and if you're going to be there and want to run into me, here's where I'm definitely going to be! Friday 5:00 PM, Marquette A - Blowing Up the Death Star is Easy, Comedy is Hard Presenter - Being funny on paper is a much different animal than telling a joke to your friends, and while a well-told joke can make a story shine, a badly-told one can completely undermine the work. Stop by for an overview of the way humor functions in stories, the mechanics behind it, and maybe even an answer to the question of why we'll never have another Terry Pratchett or Douglas Adams. 7:00 PM, Salon 6 - A Nightmare on Hawkins Street: Stranger Things Season 4 Panelist - A review of Season 4 and a look into Season 5. Saturday 10:00 AM, Fishbowl - Author Reading with

The Real Problem with Black Elves (clickbait title)

🧝🏿 ... For Mortal Men Doomed to Die... Author's note: One thing I don't engage with at all in this essay is the notion of representation, not because it isn't important, but more because a lot of people more qualified than I am have already weighed in. Instead, I'm sticking to things that I am more familiar with: storytelling tools and white self-identity. So there's been no shortage of hubbub lately around color-blind casting in epic fantasy prestige television. People are getting awfully upset that there are black Targaryans, or black elves and dwarves in The Rings of Power . They claim that Tolkien intended The Silmarillion , the lore of which is the basis for The Rings of Power , as an ancient history of England, and that to put non-white people in it does not accurately reflect a time before widespread travel would allow for intercontinental race-mixing. And why would the Noldor or the Eldar or the proto-Hobbits be non-white? And others have pointed out that,

The Obligatory ADHD Blog Post

🏃‍♂️ Get Out Your Seat and Jump Around... This week I was officially diagnosed with ADHD. Like most adult ADHD-ers, we figured it out when one of my children was diagnosed a few years ago, because he's "just like his father". Then I started watching Jessica McCabe's How to ADHD  channel on YouTube--which I heartily recommend to anyone with a child or loved one dealing with it--and while I initially tuned in to try to help understand my son better, what I was seeing instead was a series of eerily-accurate descriptions of my own life and my own brain. So in that way, diagnosis was just a formality; I've known for a while now. I'd never been evaluated at all as a child, even though I constantly fidgeted, because I got good grades. I'm smart and really good at taking tests. And while I was hyper , I was a a fairly palatable flavor of hyper. I forgot things and lost things and got turned around in conversations and all of the usual tells, but I had enough of a

Stray Thoughts: "The Algorithm"

Facebook has decided that I am very interested in the legal and personal drama surrounding the 20th anniversary of the debut album from the Murderdolls... a band I had never heard of twenty minutes before I started writing this post. This is broadly amusing to me. I regularly see posts about metal bands, even though the only metal band I follow at all is Tool--and they're pretty unorthodox in the genre. And I frequently linger on the posts because even if I don't care about the band or the genre, music discussion is somewhat interesting to me. And then you get point-counterpoint posts about who really owns the rights to Beyond the Valley of the Murderdolls , which is an excellent title, I have to admit... but I don't actually care or want to see any more of this content. Now, it's easy to decry this as "the algorithm" failing, but honestly, this is the algorithm behaving as intended. It noticed that I lingered on a post and decided to feed me more of that. Con