Sunday, October 29, 2023

A Week in Writing #480 - Anxiety

Hope everyone is staying safe, and, of course, writing.

I know if may not seem like much, but I just sent off a link to our first trade to LibraryPass. But for me it was a somewhat tense and anxious moment. There was a real sense of finality in doing it, something that I rarely feel when working on Powers Squared or even sending a query letter.

We've been told for a couple of years now that we should try to get our book into libraries, especially school libraries, and to put a fine point on it, college libraries, since the book takes place at a college; San Romero Community College. The trick, which no one bothered to show us, was how to do that. School libraries, like any other government agency, buys from a set list of contractors/companies, and little ol' SRCC Press was not on that list. Library Pass is and so the hope is we'll get a little exposure.

While it should have been pretty much a slam dunk, I wanted to add SRCC Press to the cover and, for some reason, this took more than one "build" to do. First the cover was too big and had to be resized and then when I put together all the pages (104 if you're counting), the revised cover wasn't included. Nothing makes you feel more stupid than messing that up.

Well, anyway, it's sent and now the anxiety of waiting to hear back sets in. Hopefully, everything works and we're good to go. The second trade is pretty much ready, we just need the new covers to be colored, a little lettering and it should be ready to go.

Some of this news, about Library Pass, was shared on our latest OAPS podcast, the October 2023 Team Meeting. Listen here now and watch here later (Wednesday on).

Busy week on Trophy Unlocked. Monday was Paul's Second Look at Devil May Cry; Wednesday was Paul's review of Haunting Ground, Friday was Paul's review of Resident Evil 4 (2023) and Saturday was Trevor's review of Willy's Wonderland. This month was Resident Evil/horror, so these all fit that pattern. Spoiler, we did see Five Nights at Freddy's on opening day, and Paul's review will be up on Halloween; something to look forward to.

Unrelated, I'm working on a review of The Famous Ferguson Case (1932), which in and of itself isn't that famous at all but did star one of my favorites from that time, Joan Blondell. You'll have to wait for that one.

Did some more work on the re-tooled Skylar, by which I mean I got through a chapter and part of the next one. So progess is being made on that front.

This coming week, I need to finish Famous Ferguson and also work on the newsletter, The Hound Dogs' Howl, which comes out next Sunday.

Well, that about does it for me. Keep writing and I'll see you back here next week.

Sunday, October 22, 2023

A Week in Writing #479 - Still Slow Going

Hope everyone is staying safe, and, of course, writing.

Speaking of staying safe, over the weekend, I, along with the rest of my family, got vaccinated for the flu and for the new strain of Covid. In a couple of weeks, I'll go back and get one for RSV, as, yes, I'm in that age range.

Another not so effective week of writing. The cold was still with me for a good part of the week, so that's my excuse. Now that I've rounded that corner, I have to get back to getting things done.

This week, my big accomplishment was getting a dba set up. I'm doing business as SRCC Press, the publisher of Powers Squared. I don't think it means anything really, but my CPA has been after me to set one up, so I finally did it. Partly because I need to but also because in the new year, Powers Squared will be available on Library Pass, which means our books will be in school libraries across the country. This has been something we were told to do by Gamal Hennessey a couple of years ago, but that was easier said than done.

But it looks like that's coming along. I need to send in the materials still. Being under the weather was my excuse, but now it's getting ISBN numbers. Not that I'm afraid of the process of getting one, it's the cost. Since a number costs more than all the monies we've ever received for the books, I've been a little squeamish about the expense, but I think it would help with the entire process so I'm going to have to bite the bullet and do it.

We're putting together a second trade, issues 6-9 for Library Pass. The covers have been drawn, but not colored and it's a chance for us to fix something that bothered my co-creators when it was printed. A minor bit of dialogue, and no, it's not what was said, nothing bad, more like how it was presented. I think I kind of bullied it through the first go round so this would be a chance to make it right. We'll incorporate it into the Kickstarter I'd like to do next year and then make them available some time after that.

I have done some work, but not much, on a new approach to Skylar, that long suffering novel I keep writing about writing. I moved the introduction of the character up and I'm making some other changes. We'll see if it comes out better this time around.

I am working on a review of The Vampire Bat (1933), look for that next Halloween on Trophy Unlocked, so watch for it. In the meantime, it's been horror and Resident Evil Month. Tuesday was Paul's review of Resident Evil 0 HD Remaster followed on Thursday with his review of Resident Evil 4 (2005). The Saturday morning review was, surprise, also Paul's, this one for Frankenweenie (2012).

I would be remiss if I didn't point out that Trophy Unlocked hit a new milestone over the weekend, 1500 Reviews.

The OAPS this week was our 11th Comic Book Club meeting, this time it was Scott Pilgrim, Vol. 1: Scott Pilgrim's Precious Little Life, written and illustrated by Bryan Lee O'Malley, with Julia Canon, Jen Moreno, Rachel Wells and Trevor. You can listen here or watch it here on Wednesday. Next week, it's a team meeting, which you're welcome to watch on at 6 pm PT next Friday. Be There and Be Squared.

Well, that about does it for me. Keep writing and I'll see you again next week.

Sunday, October 15, 2023

A Week in Writing #478 - Under the Weather and Another Birthday

Hope everyone is staying safe, and, of course, writing.

I'm sorry to say that this has not been a banner week for me, mostly because I've been under the weather for the last few days. It's not so much writer's block as thinking block. I'd rather veg out than do anything constructive.

It's nothing really serious, mostly a dry cough but it has seemed to zap a lot of my energy for most of the week. I get really tired and fall to sleep or just sit and stare at the computer screen.

As a result, not much progress has been made on the rewrite of Skylar. I did start the book over again, using mostly what I've already written but moving up the first encounter to page one, etc., after which things got a little foggy. In the original version, she was a stripper, but I'm adding in a new element to her character, she is also on OnlyFans. I've been reading that many people, during Covid, went to that site when they couldn't work in public, so it might make sense for a stripper to have gone to that site in order to financially survive when they couldn't dance. Some women have done quite well by using the site.

That was the only writing I've done so far this week, which isn't much.

No new review for me this week, and not so much because of illness but because it was my wife's birthday on Saturday and we went out rather than drain the DVR. That said, my review of DrĂ¡cula (1931) was the Saturday Morning Review on Trophy Unlocked. Otherwise, the blog has been mostly Resident Evil with Paul's review of Resident Evil 3 (2020) on Tuesday and his review of Resident Evil Code: Veronica X on Thursday. I would be remiss not to mention that our review hub for Assassin's Creed also dropped on Thursday.

For OAPS this week, it was a look back at EyeShield 21, an American football manga written by Riichiro Inagaki and illustrated by Yusuke Murata that is celebrating its 21th year. Paul and Trevor did most of the talking on this show, which was fine by me. They have and have read all 37 volumes of the story. Listen here now or watch here on Wednesday. Next week's podcast is our Comic Book Club. We're reading Scott Pilgrim Vol 1.

Well, that about does it for me. Keep writing and I'll see you next week.

Sunday, October 8, 2023

A Week in Writing #477 - Rewrites, Thumbnails and Resident Evil

Hope everyone is staying safe, and, of course, writing.

I'm about done with my re-reading project. I've decided that Paperback Detective needs some work. I think the writing's too loose and some details come out too early in the book. I need to rework some of it to bring it up to standards, well, my standards.

I've also been doing some thinking about Skylar and wanting to rework some aspects of her character in the book. Now, it's just down to the hard part, or the easy part depending, writing it.

Another, unrelated idea came to me as well but I'm not going to into it just yet. Too much other things to work on first.

Speaking of which, I started doing something I haven't done since the first issue, making thumbnails for what should be the next issue of Powers Squared. Part of the reason I'm doing it is to hopefully help the artist know what I'm thinking of in the script. I've already come to this decision, but this confirms the fact that I am not the artist. I even have a badge to that effect and these drawings prove that, although I think some of it has to do with trying to get an idea across in something in less space than a postage stamp. I'm about halfway through the issue.

We'll have to wait to see if it helps, because we still have the current to get through. We are thinking ahead, as we have artwork already done for the trade we're going to release next year. This one is going to be for issues 6-9. We brought Rachel Wells, the artist on those issues, to do the covers. You'll have to wait a bit to see them.

In a bit of cross promotion, our OAPS this week was about the videogame series Resident Evil, since it is Resident Evil Month on Trophy Unlocked. It was mostly a Paul show since he is the gamer of the two of us. You can listen to it here or watch it on Wednesday when it drops on our YouTube channel.

With that said, it should come as no surprise that Resident Evil reviews dominated Trophy Unlocked. Things started on Tuesday with Paul's review of Resident Evil HD Remaster. That was followed by Paul's review of Resident Evil 2 (2019), and then Paul's review of the movie Resident Evil: Welcome to Raccoon City as the Saturday Morning Review. Oh, and there will be more to come through the month. 

Meanwhile, I'm working on a review of Shockproof (1949), which I should finish tonight or tomorrow.

Well, that about does it for me. Keep writng and I'll see next week.

Sunday, October 1, 2023

A Week in Writing #476 - Eyesight needed

Hope everyone is staying safe, and, of course, writing.

Woke up on my birthday and started to put on my glasses when they fell apart in my hands. They were the frameless type and there was already a crack in the lens. My current frames are being reset with new lenses, but they've been delayed two weeks, so this was the prescription before the last one. But that meant I had to go back to a pair of glasses even older. Long story short, I don't remember what glasses I was wearing three years ago, so I'm stumbling to find a pair I can see through. Now, that's a bit of a lowbar; I'm not blind, but it's the small stuff, like everything written on the back of everything or on the internet that I'm having trouble with. Great way to start out the year.

I was able to adjust throughout the week and was able to get my new glasses on Saturday, so it did resolve itself but it does show how important seeing is to writing.

On that subject, I have been reworking Paperback Detective and updating it so that it fits in better with the other stories; lining up events, etc. In this one, J.D. is hired by a client to follow his wife, whom he thinks is having an affair. Before he can determine if she is or not, the woman ends up murdered and J.D.'s client is the prime suspect. Even his defense attorney thinks he's guilty. J.D. is the only one trying to prove him innocent. In that effort, he's working against his ex-, Debbie Estevez, who is the lead on the murder investigation on the case, despite being four months pregnant. It is while discussing the case that J.D. discovers that he might be the father of the baby despite the fact Debbie is married to someone else.

Turning to Powers Squared, we completed The Hound Dogs Howl and sent it out on Sunday morning. The piece on twins ended up being about Tegan and Sara, and the recommnedation was Resident Evil 4 (2023) in case you're interested. You can receive your own copy by signing up here.

This past Friday, we had our September team meeting with Julia Canon, Jen Moreno and Trevor joining Paul and I to discuss what's new with the book. Listen here if you're interested or watch it on Wednesday when it goes up on YouTube.

On the subject of Trophy Unlocked, we completed Batman Month on the blog with Saturday Morning's review of Batman: The Doom That Came to Gotham written by Paul. October is horror month but also Resident Evil Month (Part 1).

Totally unrelated to either, I completed a review of Reckless (1935), the Jean Harlow-William Powell starrer. Rather than draining the DVR, this was one of the films in a 7-film set of Harlow films I receieved for my birthday. As is the usual, I have no idea when it will be up on the blog, but I wouldn't imagine it would be in October. December is pretty packed as well.

Anyway, that about does it for me. Keep writing and I'll see you next week.