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Friday Link Pack

Sherlock Holmes
It’s Friday so I figured why not take the time to share a few interesting links I have found throughout the week.
Some of these I mention on twitter, if you’re not already following me there, please do!


Conan Doyle Estate Is Horrified That The Public Domain Might Create ‘Multiple Personalities’ Of Sherlock Holmes
A very fascinating post from TechDirt regarding the legality of public domain creations in regards to a fictional character.

Tomato Can Blues
A New York Times article by Mary Pilon on Charlie Rowan, a small time cage fighter in Michigan who faked his death and was later arrested in armed robbery. It’s really well written piece and the interactive article is gorgeous. Very much worth a read.


Waterfalls, Islands, Lakes, Rivers, and Mountains of the Western Hemisphere
A really cool diagram from the 1850s by J. H. Colton comparing, lakes, rivers, mountains, and waterfalls of the western hemisphere. Super cool.

The Art of JCV
Jed Voltz has a super awesome and trippy style and an incredible imagination. He’s worth checking out. Also, he has originals for sale online. All of them listed are under $100. As I said on twitter: Your walls need art so go buy some.


Iron Horse covering “Enter the Sandman”
Step 1: Take one of Metallica’s best songs. Step 2: Cover it Bluegrass style. Step 3: Win.

How to Eat like a Pirate
Yesterday was International Talk Like A Pirate Day, and in honor of this most auspicious of holidays the Smithsonian gave advice for anyone wanting to take it to the next level.

Lovecraft Story of the Week:

Unda; or, The Bride of the Sea
I’m feeling a bit nautical this Friday.

Farewell Gif(s) of the Week:

Confused Superman


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I draw maps.

Map of Lovat
Detail of the City of Lovat from my manuscript “The Stars Were Right.”

I write speculative fiction, which is the fancy way to say I write books that fit somewhere between sci-fi and fantasy, both of my manuscripts Coal Belly and Stars exists in realities separate from ours. Coal Belly takes place during an industrial revolution on a river covered planet named Vale, Stars exists in a distant furutre where the surface of the earth has changed significantly and strange creatures interact with humanity on a day to day basis. They’re both very detailed settings and in both cases I found that drawing my own maps really helped me with my world building.

I write with Scrivener (an amazing tool, I’ll probably write a post on it at some point in the future) and it has some templates for locations that I find very helpful. However sometimes a document with descriptions isn’t enough. My love of maps and my reliance on them in my writing is probably born out of my career as a designer. I can write details, but visualizing them spatially is often difficult for me.

“City of Cardova,” a central location in my manuscript “Coal Belly”

More and more I tend to find myself breaking out the ol’ moleskine and starting to sketch. Maps help me see a city, or a nation in better context, I can write to that local when I have it drawn out before me. See the distance between point A and B. Other times I use a map to work out details in a scene or a chapter. Case in point: I wrote a scene towards the end of Coal Belly and after reading it I realized it was confusing, so I drew a map. I choreographed how the whole event played out, I mapped character movement, and made notes on the actions of the scene. It worked out well.

So I draw maps, and will probably continue to do so, how about you? Ever drawn a map to help you write? What tools do you use? How detailed do you get?