Friday Link Pack 11/06/2015

It’s Friday! That means it’s time for the Friday Link Pack, my weekly post covering topics such as writing, art, current events, and random weirdness. Some of these links I mentioned on Twitter, if you’re not already following me there, please do! Do you have a link I should feature in the upcoming link pack? Click here to email me and let me know! (Include a website so I can link to you as well.) Let’s get to it…


Dune: An Appreciation At 50 Years
This year, Frank Herbert‘s masterpiece, Dune, turned 50. Paste magazine put together this quick retrospective look at this seminal science fiction work and its lasting impact on the genre.

How Do You Cope With Bad Feedback On Your Work?
Not everyone is going to like what you write. Some people are going to loathe it. How do you deal with that sort of feedback? How do you overcome it? The ever amazing Warren Adler has some ideas.

Alan Moore Talks To John Higgs About The 20th Century
In this video John Higgs, author of the upcoming book, Stranger Than We Can Imagine: Making Sense of the Twentieth Century, discusses the previous century in weird-fiction great Alan Moore’s own work. Along the way, the two discuss the H.P. Lovecraft (heavily), as well as Jack the Ripper, the Red Scare, the fear inherent in the early 1900s, and a lot more.


Paul Klee’s Notebooks Are Online
The pages within the notebooks of the Swiss-German artist, Paul Klee remind me of a strange yet wonderful mathematical infused grimoire. It’s fascinating to see behind the curtain on one of the most influential figures in Bauhaus. [Thanks to Steve for sharing this.]

Portraits Of Auto Mechanics Are A Homage To Renaissance Paintings
A classical look at a hard working profession. When I first saw these photos I thought it was meant to be a joke—and perhaps it is on some level. But at the same time it raises the nobility of the blue-collar worker and places them at a place where they are rarely viewed. I love it.

Museum Dedicated to Over 100 Hyperrealistic Miniature Film Sets
In the center of Lyon, France, there is a museum that houses painstakingly recreated film sets in miniature. The level of detail is so incredible that you will have a hard time telling these miniature sets apart from their physically more imposing cousins.


Ranking 40 Dystopias by Their Livability
Dystopia in fiction is here to stay, but until now, no one had compared each by their liability. Which is best? Which would be the most comfortable? Jm Vorel is on the case in this article for Paste magazine.

No, Spooning Isn’t Sexist. The Internet Is Just Broken.
The internet is driven by clicks vs. quality content. As a result, it’s broken often spreading vindictive stupidity vs. well thought out discussion. Do you know who is to blame? All of us.

The World’s Northernmost Big City—A Polluted Hell On Earth
Norilsk, Siberia one of the coldest places on earth, surrounded by nearly 100,000 hectares of burned out land also happens to be one of the most polluted. io9 shares some surreal photos from this surreal city.


Tempest Prognosticator
The tempest prognosticator, also known as the leech barometer, is a 19th-century invention by George Merryweather in which leeches are used in a barometer. The twelve leeches are kept in small bottles inside the device; when they become agitated by an approaching storm they attempt to climb out of the bottles and trigger a small hammer which strikes a bell. The likelihood of a storm is indicated by the number of times the bell is struck.


The White Ship
A lighthouse keeper walks a bridge of moonbeams to go on an adventure with a robed man on a ship that appears only under a full moon.


going to the moon, brb

Friday Link Pack 10-23-2015

Friday Link Pack 10/23/2015

Friday is here! That means it’s time for the Friday Link Pack. My weekly post covering topics such as writing, art, current events, and random weirdness. Some of these links I mentioned on Twitter, if you’re not already following me there, please do! Do you have a link I should feature in the upcoming link pack? Click here to email me and let me know! (Include a website so I can link to you as well.) Let’s get to it…


Win A Copy Of Red Litten World
The Northwest Horror Podcast is giving away signed copies of my latest novel, Red Litten World. To enter just Tweet, Instagram, or Facebook them and let them know your favorite Lovecraft adaptation. That’s it! (You have until midnight, tonight.) Good luck!

Advice From The Creator Of Calvin And Hobbes
It’s no secret that Bill Watterson is incredible. This comic, based on a graduation speech Watterson gave at his alma mater, does a fantastic job in forcing us to reflect on what matters in our lives. [Thanks to Sky for sharing this with me.]

10 Scary Books That Will Seriously Keep You Up At Night
Huffington Post compiles a list of the scariest books and just in time for Halloween. For whatever reason, Old Broken Road isn’t on this list, but it should be. (In my humble opinion it’s probably the scariest of the series so far.)

Fear Never Leaves
If you missed yesterday’s post, I got all emo and reflected on the emotions that build up over the launch of a book, and talk about working through my fears as I continue to fight towards my successes.


Reimagined Disney Animals With Human Personalities
What if the talking animals from animated Disney films were reimagined and humanized? What would Simba look like? How about Baloo? Well, artist and illustrator Alaina Bastian has answered those questions and more in her series Humanized. There’s a lot of fun work here. [Thanks to Dave for sharing this with me.]

Mark Zug’s Art For The Dune Card Game
I’ve been on a Dune kick this year ever since I reread it this spring. This week I stumbled across these illustrations of characters for the Dune card game. (Which is sadly out of print.) Some amazing work here, but my favorite is easily the Jessica Atreides piece. (Which is also the image featured above.)

There is some disturbing and otherworldly about this cotton installation from Jennifer Strunge and Jonathan Latiano. It’s like a bizarre cuddly monstrosity is pushing in from some other reality.


Better Reasons To Boycott Star Wars
So, some internet trolls started the #BoycottStarWars hashtag for some stupid trolly reason, and it went viral, and the typical people freaked out. In response, the Washington Post wrote up this article to offer some funny (and not racist) reasons to boycott J.J. Abrams newest film.

Dropping Water Levels Reveal Hidden Church
It’s like something out of Lovecraft, Mexico’s record drought has revealed a creepy waterlogged church that dates back to the 1600s.

A Treasury of Rare And Weird Star Wars Posters From Around The World
A collection of amazing (and often strange) Star Wars movie posters from around the world. No idea what is happening in Russia. [Thanks to my buddy Bartek for sharing this.]


Smiley Face Murder Theory
The Smiley face murder theory (variations include Smiley face murders, Smiley face killings, Smiley face gang, and others) is a theory advanced by two retired New York City detectives, Kevin Gannon and Anthony Duarte, that a number of young men found dead in bodies of water across several Midwestern American states over the last decade did not accidentally drown, as concluded by law enforcement agencies, but were victims of a serial killer or killers. The term smiley face became connected to the alleged murders when it was made public that the police had discovered graffiti depicting a smiley face near locations where they think the killer dumped the bodies in at least a dozen of the cases. The response of law enforcement investigators and other experts to Gannon and Duarte’s theory has been largely skeptical.


Herbert West—Reanimator
The tale of Professor West includes creepy zombies and the first mention of ol’ Miskatonic University. This story was also the basis for the 1985 cult classic, Re-Animator.


the majesty

Friday Link Pack - 07/10/2015

Friday Link Pack 07/10/2015

It’s time for the Friday Link Pack! Some of these links I mention on Twitter, if you’re not already following me there, please do! Have a link I should feature in the upcoming link pack? Click here to email me and let me know! (Include a website so I can link to you as well.) Let’s get to it…


The Year Of Women
Author Kamila Shamsie makes her case and challenges the publishing industry to make 2018 a year when only women authors are published.

‘A Year of Women’? How About ‘A Year of Publishing Parity’ Instead?
Author Lorraine Devon Wilke‘s rebuttal to Kamila Shamsie’s piece challenges the industry not to publish only women in 2018, but to be fair and equal in who they choose to publish.

Dune, 50 Years On: How A Science Fiction Novel Changed The World
Great piece from The Guardian on Frank Herbert’s Dune one of the greatest science fiction novels of our time and its impact on society. [The featured image for this post is a Dune illustration by Henrik Sahlström. I highly recommend checking out his work. He does great stuff.]

15 Words To Eliminate From Your Vocabulary To Sound Smarter
Helpful for both conversation and for writing. It’s good advice and a handy list to keep nearby. [Thanks to Dave for sharing this.]

Scottish Prize Goes To Book Rejected 44 Times
Never give up. The only way to fail at writing is quitting.

Six Tools Of My Trade
A few readers and fellow authors have emailed me and asked what tools I use when I write, from software to hardware, even writing instruments. This week, I put together this post sharing six of my essentials, and some of my favorite things I use on a daily basis.


Cal Redback
I have been seeing Cal’s incredible photo-manipulation work all over the internet as of late. Bending the natural world with human forms he creates pieces that are both haunting and somewhat disturbing.

Zack Mclaughlin’s Sculptures
I’m in awe of these hyper-realistic paper and wood sculptures of birds. They’re beautiful. He sells these in his Etsy shop as well, which you can check out here.

Why Babies In Medieval Paintings Look Like Ugly Old Men
We’ve all thought it. What is with those strange little creatures hanging off people in medieval art. Well, Vox gets to the bottom of it and reveals the reason behind their strange appearance.


Stuff In Space
An incredible little site that allows you to see all of the satellites and garbage currently orbiting our lonely little planet.

One Vancouver Forest Played Just About Every Wooded Locale On The X-Files
Coming from the Pacific Northwest it’s always amusing when I see shows like Supernatural and The X-Files try to pass off our lush fern-covered forests as places in the Midwest or the South. We PNW locals all know… oh, we know.

The American Home Through The Decade
A fun little infographic that explores the ever-increasing footprint of the American home. As a tiny house, well… sensible house apologist I find it a bit depressing until we see the emergence of the tiny house movement.


List Of Kim Jong-il’s Titles
“When Kim Jong-il, former leader of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (North Korea), is mentioned in North Korean media and publications, he is not simply addressed by name. At least one special title is used, and his name is emphasized by a special bold font, for example: “The great leader Comrade Kim Jong-il provides on-the-spot guidance to the Ragwon Machine Complex.” Alternatively, a larger than normal font may be used. The titles themselves were developed by the Central Committee of the Workers’ Party. The same applies to Kim Jong-il’s father, Kim Il-sung, who ruled North Korea from 1948 to 1994. Scholars have collected the following list of Kim Jong-il’s titles…”


The Quest of Iranon
A golden-haired boy sings of a city where he was once a prince.



Friday Link Pack 04/17/2015

Friday Link Pack 04/17/15

BOOM! It’s Friday! That mean it’s time to share a few links I’ve found over the last few days. Some of these I mention on Twitter, if you’re not already following me there, please do! Have a link I should feature in the upcoming link pack? Click here to email me and let me know! (Include a website so I can link to you as well.) Enough chatter, let’s get to it…


How To Talk About Your Novel
I have been to a few conventions now and it surprises me how many authors aren’t able to talk about their books with readers and other authors. It’s important! Thankfully, author and editor J. W. Troemner has some great insight on how to solve some of the common pitfalls folks have when discussing their work.

Goodnight Dune
It’s no secret that Dune is amazing. If you appreciate Frank Herberts masterpiece like I do, then you’ll love the classic children’s book Goodnight Moon retold with an Arrakis theme. (If you’re more of a George R. R. Martin fan, Laughing Squid put together a Goodnight Westeros for you.)

One Indie Author’s Debut Year Income
We’ve seen authors talk about their year-to-date earnings, and it’s awesome to see folks so open about the money they’re making (or not making.) Romance Authors Jessi Gage opens up and compares her 2013 to her 2014.

Top 105 Blogs And Websites For Writers
It’s always good to have a stable of great sites to read. In the name of excess, e-booksindia had put together a list of one-hundred and five blogs and sites for you to browse. Here’s a handy list of some great resources for writers.

I’m Doing A Live Reading This Saturday, Here’s How You Can Tune In
If you missed my post from yesterday, I am doing a live reading using the new app Periscope and you can tune in. Hit the post for details. See you tomorrow!


Antigirl – A Love Story Documentary in the City of Angels
I love it when artists bear their souls. So often we feel like we’re alone in our journey of creativity, it’s encouraging to know others out there go through similar struggles. With that in mind I highly recommend you watch this rad documentary about the journey of Tiphanie Brooke and Mike Polson, two incredible LA-based artists.

The Art of Alyssa Winans
Beautiful artwork from illustrator and game artist Alyssa Winans. I really dig her See America series, but all her work is solid. I’m a fan.

Nicolas Martin, Paintings
If you have been following my blog for any length of time you’ll know that I love atmosphere. You see why I dig French artist Nicholas Martin’s work. Moody and beautiful. See more on his website as well.


Professor Decodes 10 Words From Mysterious Voynich Manuscript
One of histories weirdest mysteries, the Voynich manuscript has remained untranslated since its discovery. Now Stephen Bax, a professor of applied linguistics at the University of Bedfordshire in England, has translated ten words in the strange codex. More info on his site.

Mapping Migration in the United States
I love maps. So when I saw this New York Times map showing the migration patterns within the United States I knew I’d be sharing it here. Interesting how so many folks in our melting pot of a nation don’t move too far from home. West stays to West, East to East, and South to South.

Arcology: Cutaways Of The Future City-Hives That Never Were
The futurist idea of arcologies is a mainstay of science fiction. I even play with the concept in the Bell Forging books. So when I saw this post from Cory Doctorow about Paolo Soleri’s 1969 book: Arcology: The City in the Image of Man. It was something I was very interested in. The book sounds fascinating, but the images… you need to see the images. [Thanks to Steve for sharing this.]

Random Wikipedia Article of the Week:

Agloe, New York
Agloe is a fictional place in Delaware County, New York, that became an actual landmark. In the 1930s, General Drafting Company founder Otto G. Lindberg and an assistant, Ernest Alpers, assigned an anagram of their initials to a dirt-road intersection in the Catskill Mountains: NY 206 and Morton Hill Road, north of Roscoe, New York. The town was designed as a copyright trap.

Lovecraft Story of the Week:

The Curse of Yig
Don’t mess with the snake god.

Gif of the Week:

They see me rollin'...

Reverend Mother Ramallo

Fear is the mind-killer.

Around this time last year I wrote a post titled “I’m scared.” It was a candid take on the feelings I was dealing with while I was on the verge of releasing The Stars Were Right. You’d think with one book under my belt that it would be easier, that publishing Old Broken Road would be more relaxing. Yet, here I am staring at another final manuscript and those same fears are hurdling through my head yet again.

Saying and understanding are two separate things. I now understand: the fear never goes away. It’s like the tide of the ocean. Sometimes its waters are distant and easily ignored and sometimes it hammers us. I don’t care who you are or how successful you’ve been. It’s always there. It pokes at us. It causes self-doubt. I think a lot of writers struggle with this fear. It’s why they rewrite and rewrite and rewrite. It’s why they never submit or never publish. But, for any of us to be successful, we need to push past that fear.

The Bene Gesserit‘s litany against fear always comes to mind at a time like this:

“I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain.”

So, how do we push past this fear? How do we let it pass over and through us? Honestly, I don’t know. I don’t have a good answer. This fear isn’t something that has three quick steps or a handy online tutorial. Yet, thousands of authors get past it. If they can do it so can you. My solution: I just do. I swallow that fear, hit publish, and I let the work free. Maybe that’s enough.

Big announcement tomorrow.