Sunday, April 21, 2024

A Week in Writing #505 - Work/Sleep Balance

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

I know we all speak about a work/life balance but I'm dealing with a writing/sleep balance, in that by the time I get around to writing, I'm good for about an hour before I drop or lose the ability to make coherent thoughts. I'm sure this is something that plagues a lot of amateur writers with day jobs and families, so I know I'm not alone in this.

While I've been working on the Skylar story, there are times when I'm not as imaginative as I need to be in order to put down what I want to write. I'm getting through it, but sometimes I get to the point where I have to write something and my mind is not concentrating, if you know what I mean. I'll keep at it, but sometimes the progress is slower than I'd like.

The work on new issues of Powers Squared is sort of piecemeal. Our artist did deliver four pages of edits and two more draft pages of the newest issue, #27, we're working on. I'm not sure what our colorist is working on spefically, though I suspect she's finishing up #26 and our letterer just finished issue #24.

I had had high hopes of doing a Kickstarter this year, but I wanted to use #24 and #25 as part of the rewards and I'm not sure when it will be done. I'm also thinking that we need to have a bigger mailing list than we have now, since it hasn't really grown in quite a while. My attempts here have not been fruitful. I'm still hoping to do the LA Comic-Con this year and hope that we can add names to the list there. If you know of someone who might be interested or you yourself might be, please enroll today at SRCC; it's FREE.

This week's podcast, OAPS #240 - Kaiji (The Anime) is Great, has Trevor joining the show to discuss with Paul, the anime series. You can listen to it now here or watch it here on Wednesday pm. Next week is our monthly Team Meeting. Before we launch into Transformers Month in May, as well as FCBD with Rachel joining us for those shows.

My review of American Fiction was the Saturday Morning Review on Trophy Unlocked. I first watched the film on my phone during a recent flight and then again at home with my family before I wrote the review. I'm currently working on one for A Farewell to Arms (1932). Don't know when that will go up, but I have to finish it first.

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

Sunday, April 14, 2024

A Week in Writing #504 - Short Week

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

A trip, even a short one, can take it out of you. I think it took us a couple of days to readjust. We live a very routine life, somewhat on purpose, so even three days away seems like a big disruption to the status quo. This week really didn't get going in earnest until Tuesday, when work called and things went back to the usual normal.

Spent a lot of the writing time this week on Skylar. I'm still working through the previous chapters, cleaning them up and trying to run together the two storylines better. As I believe I wrote before, inspiration has led me to more of a melding of the storylines together. I try to work on it every night, Monday through Thursday for at least an hour or until I fall asleep, whichever comes first.

Not much to report this week on the Powers Squared front, but more on the OAPS side of things. We've lined up four creatives connected to the Transformers franchise and we're devoting May to the 40th Anniversary. We're starting with Livio Ramondelli on May 3rd, so I'm inviting you, dear reader, to join us. As always the podcast starts at 6 pm PT on

On Friday's podcast, Paul and I talked about the rather disappointing time we had at this past WonderCon. Some of it may have been the weather, but there were still empty booths and little to do. No major label, save IDW, was there and the IDW booth was mostly TMNT. Saturday may not have been the best day, but it was our only day and one that was very disappointing. You can listen to our musings here or wait until Wednesday and watch them on our YouTube channel: @powerssquared

For Trophy Unlocked, I finished my review of American Fiction, in the better late than never category. I'm not sure when it will appear, but it falls into the recommend pile. I watched it twice within 8 days, so I think I can say it's worth watching.

This week's Saturday Morning Review was Paul's review of Migration, which, like I did with American Fiction, he watched on his phone during the flight to Texas.

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

Monday, April 8, 2024

A Week in Writing #503 - The Week That Wasn't

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

My week in writing was short changed by a weekend trip, Friday 10 am to Sunday 11:30 pm, trip to Houston to celebrate my mother's 100th birthday. Not much chance to write during the weekend, including this blog and reviews for Trophy Unlocked, so this was sort of the week that wasn't and why I am late with this missive this week.

I did do some work this week on Skylar, working on it most nights when we weren't planning this excursion, so it wasn't a total loss. I'm still working on what will be the first draft when finished, but I'm getting good ideas on where I can take the story, so I'm anxious to get back to it.

Even though we weren't here or available, the On the Air with Powers Squared podcast was made, with Julia Canon, Rachel Wells and Jen Moreno handling the honors. Apparently, there was an audio issue so Julia is not heard throughout. I tried to watch while in the air over Texas, so I thought maybe that was my internet connection, still no one who watched apparently mentioned it. We've had recording issues of our own, so we can't get too upset, but you wish it hadn't happened. You can listen to what there is here or watch it here on Wednesday afternoon.

And this morning, Paul, Trevor and I recorded the first episode of what will be a month of  podcasts celebtraing the 40th anniversary of the Transformers franchise during May. At 10 this morning, we interviewed Marty Isenberg, who wrote on several Transformers-related series. We've lined up other guests, though not all of the dates have been set, but it should be an interesting departure for us.

While I didn't write any reviews this weekend, again, there was a new Saturday Morning Review on Trophy Unlocked, Trevor's review of The Pirates! In an Adventure with Scientists! the UK and original version of Aardman Animation's The Pirates! Band of Misfitswhich I reviewed back in 2013.

I did see a movie, on the airplane on my cellphone, American Fiction, which I will try to review later, but would recommend to anyone who writes.

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

Sunday, March 31, 2024

A Week in Writing #502 - Not a Wonderful WonderCon

Hope everyone is staying safe, and, of course, writing. And Happy Easter, if you're reading this on Sunday night.

In the indie comics game, spring is sort of the unofficial start of Con Season. Every town of significant size will have one or more conventions celebrating culture and/or comic books for the rest of the year. I'm not much of a con goer or a tabler, if that's a word, at least not so far. I don't have the flexibilty for one thing, or the money. And even if those weren't issues, there's getting a table.

I was on the waiting list, or at least, I was informed that I was for this year's WonderCon, which happened this past weekend in Anaheim. And even though I never got off the waitlist, there were still several open spots on the convention floor. I don't know why and, if I ask, I won't be told either. My critique of this year's WonderCon is not based on this oversight on their part or on their slowness to renew our professional status (5+ months), but what I saw at the con. If you're curious about our expectations, that was the focus of this week's podcast. Listen here, available now, or watch here on Wednesday.

Compared to Comic-Con, WonderCon is small to begin with. After doing the floor, which took several hours, there wasn't much else to do. There were no major players in attendance, save IDW. It never bodes well when there is a large non-culture related vendor. In this case, it was a medical college, which seemed very much out of place, but probably paid well for the space. Plenty of vendors and artists and we bought judiciously. There were, of course, panels, but by mid-afternoon, a couple of hours before the next panel we wanted to attend, or at least I wanted to attend, we were all bored, tired and ready to go. I'm sorry to have missed the How to Get News Coverage panel, one that I usually attend, not only to support the moderator, Rik Offenberger, but because I've actually met people who have written about Powers Squared.

We did attend one panel, Independent Creator's Summit, which I had high hopes for, but after about fifteen minutes, we bailed. What I thought and hoped would be a how to grow outside of comics into animation, games, etc., turned in one of those panels that was more about the panelists, or at least that's how it was going. I always look for chances to learn something new, but I'm not interested in a biography lesson. And when one of the creators talks about "many projects" they'll be working on without specifics, even when pressed by the moderator, it didn't promise to be very informative.

There are always positives. We did run into people we knew and were able to ask three creators if they'd be interested in being on our podcast, so there were good takeaways, just not knowledge.

WonderCon also interfered with my writing a review this week. When we got home on Saturday, the most I could absorb was MST3K's take on Village of the Giants, which it turns out we had already seen anyway. We don't review parodies of movies, save for Mystery Science Theater 3000: The Movie, which was a riff on This Island Earth, which we also reviewed.

My review of Ghostbusters: Frozen Empire was the Saturday Morning Review on Trophy Unlocked. The week was the final one for God of War Month on the blog, which included Trevor's Second Look - God of War: Ascension on Monday, his review of God of War (Dark Horse Comic) on Wednesday, and finally his review of God of War: Fallen God (Comic) on Friday.

I did work pretty consistently this week on Skylar, trying, when I can, to get through editing a chapter or two a night. I'm coming up on another new passage, and then there are more rewrites and new writing ahead of me.

Next week, my blog will most likely be a day late. I'll explain then.

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

Sunday, March 24, 2024

A Week in Writing #501 - There's Always a First Time for Everything

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

My writing this week took a twist I hadn't expected. Since our artist on Powers Squared, Julia Canon, was finishing up her work on issue #26, The Great Escape, I sent her the script for the next issue. As a change of pace, this one is more Powers Squared related than about the actual story. In issue #1, we introduced Billy O'Shea, a young boy whom like Marty and Eli, had super powers granted to him by a yokai. Billy came back in issues 16-18, Mocha and Raven, Parts 1-3, accompanied by Raven, the Yatagarasu who granted him the powers for his good deeds and turned protector when Dr. Atlas threatened him. We established in that story that Billy and Raven make a living as a long haul trucker utilizing Billy's powers of super strength and punctuality.

Well, there were things in the script that Julia questioned and after conversing with Paul and myself during the week, it was decided a rewrite was in order, so there goes Thursday night. With the rewrites and editing complete, a new version is ready. If this new storyline turns out to be a go, and we make more, Trevor has also come up with some story ideas that we might use in future.

A comic book is a collaborative process, at least for us who do not draw. We've gotten used to changes being made when the words on the page get turned into images. Rachel Wells, our previous artist, would occasionally move and/or combine panels when she thought it was necessary for the story. Usually, we went along with her suggestions. However, this is the first time we've rewritten a script, like this, for the artist.

Speaking of comic books, we had our 13th Comic Book Club session on Friday's On the Air with Powers Squared. Along with Rachel, Julia, Trevor and Jen Moreno, we discussed The Apothecary Diaries manga written by Itsuki Nanao and illustrated by Nekokurage. Afterward, a tribute to Akira Toriyama, the creator behind Dragon Ball. You can listen here or watch it here on Wednesday afternoon after 2:30 pm PT. Our next book will be Pompo the Cinephile, a Japanese manga by Shogo Sugitani. Read along and join us when we discuss. That session hasn't yet been scheduled, but I'll let you know when here. If you do plan to be a part of it, please have your three favorite films ready as well.

On the subject of the movies, on Saturday afternoon, we watched Ghostbusters: Frozen Empire and I wrote the review, which will appear next Saturday morning on Trophy Unlocked. It's been a busy week on the blog. God of War month continued with Trevor's Second Look - God of War: Ghost of Sparta on Tuesday, and his Second Look - God of War (WildStorm/DC Comic) on Thursday, with more to come next week. The Saturday Morning Review this week was Paul's take on Kung Fu Panda 4.

A lot of my writing this week has been Powers Squared related. In addition to the rewrites, there was  work on the newsletter, which will go out the first Sunday in April. I think, with the exception of some last minute updates, it should be ready to go.

I did manage to do some work on Skylar, but most of it has been rewrites rather than new pages. 

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

Sunday, March 17, 2024

A Week in Writing #500 - Nice Way to End the Week

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

A nice way to end the week is to meet up with someone and have a good talk and catch up. And that's what happened this week on the podcast On the Air with Powers Squared. Lucas Scheffel, a comic book creator from Australia, was our guest for the sixth time, and for the first time in well over a year. We talked about his new comic book Kickstarter, comic book convenstions, Cricket and, of course, Bluey. You can listen to it on our website or wait until Wednesday to watch it here.

Seeing as it's a live podcast, we had a driver issue that delayed us and which Paul managed to work through, but it does speak to the challenges of doing one regularly, so there is some editing involved but nothing of substance edited out, just the rough start.

On the topic of the podcasts, I'm revamping that part of the website. I've been trying to keep a "Best of" section of videos, but that can get to be unweildy. So, I'm thinking of keeping a Best of but also adding separate sections for The Comic Book Club videos, the Taste Testing videos, and one of the conversations we've had with other creators. The videos about particular issues I've been adding to the pages about those issues, which is another way to keep the links on the website. So far, I've only done the section for The Comic Book Club. If you're interested, you can take a look at

Working on the next issue of Powers Squared, which is sometimes a slower go than I appreciate. I really want 8 pages a month from the creatives involved: arist, colorist, letterer, but that is easier said than done. We're getting close to the end with the artwork for #26, tentatively titled, The Great Escape, as the artist is finishing the final pages and the cover.

For Trophy Unlocked, I wrote a review of Main Street After Dark (1945), a definite B-movie that was also the film debut of Audrey Totter. Not sure when it will appear. The blog is still in the middle of God of War month with two new reviews. On Tuesday, Trevor's Second Look - God of War: Chains of Olympus and on Thursday it was his Second Look - God of War III Remastered. The Saturday Morning Review was Paul's for Pompo the Cinephile, a 2021 anime look at making movies.

On the Skylar front, I did make some progress. I'm changing the story a bit, so some of what I've written will be changing, but I'm liking it better.

No querying this month. I think it may be April before I get to that.

During the year, there are several times when real life and family collide with my writing. I'm coming up on one of those in a few weeks. My mother is having a milestone birthday and we're all flying to see her in Houston. We're flying on a Friday, so we're relying on our arist, Julia, to take over the show. But there's also things like the Saturday Morning Review, the uploads and the newsletter that have to be done ahead of time. And, of course, this blog will be late by a day because of it, too. But that's a couple of weeks away.

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

Sunday, March 10, 2024

A Week in Writing in #499 - More Issues with GoDaddy


I hope everyone is staying safe, and, of course, writing.

Another banner week when it came to my on-going issues with GoDaddy. Last week, it was an issue with inserting an image. This week, I was trying to create a social post for our upcoming podcast on Friday. However, at least through Google, I was unable to even open the website. I tried to get help, but texting with someone took about three hours. I'm not sure who they think has that much time to wait for help, especially for small businesses. I ended up making the posts myself directly on the social media platforms and when I did get back to the website, this morning, all seemed to be fixed.

At times, on Friday afternoon, I'm ready to find a new host platform. My biggest concern is having to rebuild the site from scratch and losing the email we have set up. But it doesn't seem like a week goes by that I don't get frustrated with GoDaddy.

We have a new issue of Powers Squared, coming out this coming week, on Wednesday March 13. It's called "Mission: Istanistan, Part 1" and was written by myself and Paul, with art by Rachel Wells, colors by Julia Canon and lettering by Trevor. In this issue, the U.S. Army enlists Marty and Eli Powers to work on a classified secret mission to stop a rogue nation, Istanistan, from completing work on a WMD. The mission seems simple, one will teleport in and do the work and the other will use telepathy to guide them. It's a dangerous mission, but what could go wrong?

We talked about it on this week's podcast, with Rachel, Julia and Trevor all participating. You can listen here, or watch the video on YouTube on Wednesday. There is a preview available to look at and you can order it in print or digital through The Campus Store, where and when available. Oh, by the way, links to all of the issues are available there as well.

It's been a busy week on Trophy Unlocked with the kick off of God of War Month on the blog. Things started off with Trevor's Second Look at God of War (2005). On Wednesday was Trevor's Second Look - God of War II; and on Friday was his Second Look - God of War: Betrayal. I got the Saturday Morning Review with The Last Command (1928). No new review this week from me. We spent Saturday night away from home this week, so that took care of that.

Did some writing this week on Skylar; finally getting to the part I've been wanting to rewrite for the longest time.

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

Sunday, March 3, 2024

A Week in Writing #498 - Newsletter and Podcasts

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

Sort of a busy week, though mostly behind the scenes sorts of stuff.

Every month, like it or not, we publish The Hound Dogs' Howl, our monthly newsletter on all things Powers Squared. Now, a lot of this is rather routine stuff, however, the lead, a feature about twins, A Heard Around Campus bit, as well as a recommendation have to be written. And wait for it, here comes my monthly pitch to have you, dear reader, consider signing up for it by enrolling in San Romero Community College. It's FREE!

This week's podcast features Moni Barrette, the Director, Collection Development & Publisher Relations at LibraryPass Comics Plus was our guest. While we try to have this be a conversation, questions still have to be drafted and reviewed. Moni talked about her career as well as getting comic books in libraries, one of which ways is through Comics Plus, which is what we're doing with Powers Squared. You can listen to the podcast now here or wait until Wednesday and watch it here.

I'm growing more and more frustrated with GoDaddy, which our website uses. Every Sunday morning, I upload the previous Friday night's podcast to the YouTube and the new peek-of-the-week to the website. I then update the website with links to the new video, update other pages related to the peek-of-the-week, especially when it involves the cover and then write and schedule two social media posts to coincide with the new data.

The last thing I need at 7 o'clock on a Sunday morning is for GoDaddy to f### up, which it did today. For some reason, the new color cover wasn't inserting like it should. There had been a black and white ink cover that was being replaced with the colored version. But, oh no, GoDaddy wouldn't do it. I manged, after several attempts to get the colored version to show up on the pages I wanted to put it on, including in addition to the peek-of-the-week page but also The Campus Store and the page about the issue. I try to keep them in sync, as it doesn't make sense to have a peek-of-the-week that is already available elsewhere on the website.

The biggest problem I had was in trying to do the social media posts. The colored version wouldn't insert, but rather the previous black and white one would insert in its place. I tried to remember what GoDaddy had advised I do when things didn't seem to work, which was to clear the cache. This is something I hate to do, since I have relog into every app and, surprise, surprise, that doesn't always go well, as the saved password for whatever reason doesn't match the password it's supposed to be per the site. I'm still not completely logged into X as a result. The better solution, since that didn't fix the problem, was to reload the image; that worked. If anyone has a good suggestion to replace GoDaddy, I'm all ears. Leave it in the comments.

Well, I finished my review of X-Men: First Class and started a new one for Naked Alibi (1954). On Trophy Unlocked, the Saturday Morning Review was Paul's for Dragon Ball Super: Super Hero. And ICYMI, Leap Year (1924) made it to the blog. Just as a warning, we're coming up on March and it will be mostly devoted to the God of War franchise, so buckle up.

I did manage some fictional writing this week, but it probably doesn't add up to 1000 words, but there I did do something.

I still have more of that to do, a review to finish, press releases to write and, hopefully, more pages to review from our artist and colorist.

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

Sunday, February 25, 2024

A Week in Writing #497 - Monday Was a Great Day

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

I had one of my best days as a writer on Monday. Not only did I finish the review, X-Men: The Last Stand, but I also rewrote the script for "Billy and Raven", a one-shot related to Powers Squared, wrote about 1500 words on my new story and read one of my son's short stories; something I was very overdue at doing. And if that wasn't enough, my entire family built the Megablocks set "Ladies and Gentlemen, The Beatles", which was 681 pieces and took three hours to build.(Note: I'd still be building it if I was doing it if my sons hadn't done the heavy lifting.) Not bad for a free day from the office.

I tried to duplicate the 1000 words again on Tuesday, and sort of barely made it, on Wednesday, I just fell short of 600. None of this, mind you, had anything to do with Skylar, but I have been thinking about making some changes in her backstory, so it's not like I've forgotten that book, it's just that I've had ideas for this newer story.

I still have to write a review this week for X-Men: First Class. Trophy Unlocked will be doing a series of X-Men movie reviews leading up to the release of Deadpool and Wolverine later this year. Only one review this week: Trevor's review of PAW Patrol: The Mighty Movie was the Saturday Morning review.

Started working, over the weekend, on the next Hound Dogs' Howl, the Powers Squared newsletter. Still time to sign up for it at I also need to write a press release or two for upcoming releases. If you're at all curious about the issues, below is a graphic showing when they'll be released through the rest of the year. They'll all be available through The Campus Store as they come out.

Speaking of releases, made the mobi files for the issues this year. I'm not sure why, but it always takes more than one try to make an issue using the software. Sort of frustrating, but the last three went pretty quickly. Paul and I posted the first issue this afternoon, so it will be available for pre-order in a day or so. We also posted the next issue on GlobalComix, so everything seems to be moving forward.

We had our monthly team meeting on Friday for On the Air with Powers Squared, and we all agreed to give Billy and Raven a one-shot. You never know, it might catch on. You can listen here now, or watch the video on our YouTube channel on Wednesday at 2:30 pm PT.

I had to resend the second trade to Library Pass this week. Apparently, the first one failed (?). Next week, we'll get more into the Library Pass when our guest will be Moni Barrette, the librarian we've been working with there. We go Live at 6 pm PT on Friday at

Just so it's no surprise, no queries yet. Still have some thinking and homework to do on that before I launch into a new soul-sucking round of that.

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

Sunday, February 18, 2024

A Week in Writing #496 - Attempting to Impart Wisdom

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

I'm stealing the title for this post from the latest On the Air with Powers Squared podcast. On Friday, Paul, our artist Julia Canon, and I spent about an hour talking with a future comic book creator, Kevin Krust, answering questions he had about doing a book. That reminded me that every so often, I hope that I am doing that here. Sometimes, this is a rant session for me, sometimes just a place to enumerate whatever it was I did or didn't do the previous week, but every so often, I hope some wisdom is imparted, however little that may be.

If you're interested in what we imparted to Kevin, you can listen here now or wait until Wednesday and watch us on our YouTube channel. I don't know what you may think, but I believe Kevin thought we were helpful.

Speaking of Powers Squared, I believe we've set a release date for Issue #20, Mission: Istanistan. The release date will be March 13th. We'll be talking about that release on our March 8th podcast, which will feature everyone connected with its production, including artist Rachel Wells, colorist Julia Canon and letterer Trevor Hankins. Be There and Be Squared. We go live at 6 pm on

We'll also, hopefully, be talking with Moni Barrette from LibraryPass/ComicsPlus on the March 1st podcast, so you might want to tune in for that as well and find out how we pulled that off.

On the subject of Powers Squared, work continues on Issue #26, "The Great Escape", with Julia sort of outlining pages 15 through 17, the next three pages she'll be working on.

After that, I'm thinking at this point of maybe doing our fourth one-shot in a row, Billy and Raven, which would be the first Powers Squared story not to feature Marty and/or Eli. Billy was first introduced in Issue #1 and Raven in Issue #16 "Mocha and Raven". It would be a big departure for us, but not all of the Archie comics featured Archie. I'll be revisiting that script in prep for that, even if we decide not to do it.

I've also been working with Rachel on some Powers Squared paraphenalia that might come up when we do our next Kickstarter.

On the Trophy Unlocked front, I finished my review of Chang (1927), which was one of the three films nominated at the first Academy Awards for Best Unique and Artistic Picture, losing to Sunrise. I had got to thinking it would be cool to watch and review all six films nominated for the Best Picture categories and Chang seemed the hardest to find. I had to buy a used Image DVD in order to watch it. You'll have to wait for publication to know if I thought it was worth it or not.

I'm still working on my review of X-Men: The Last Stand. I believe there will be a flurry of X-Men reviews on the blog coming out ahead of Deadpool and Wolverine.

The Saturday Morning Review this week was Paul's review of Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief  the 2010 feature and not the Disney+ series. The Wednesday GameDay review was Trevor's for Transformers: EarthSpark - Expedition.

I'm afraid not much other writing happened this week. As usual, Skylar got short shrift again and no queries were sent. This is the part of post where I mention what I didn't do this week and these two items seem to be permanent residents.

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

Sunday, February 11, 2024

A Week in Writing #495 - 1,000,000 and Counting

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

Let's start this week with a nod to Trophy Unlocked, the blog my son Paul started and that Trevor and I also write reviews for. This month, the blog passed 1,000,000 views, which is a significant milestone. I wish I knew when it hit that number, it was sometime during the week, but the fact is that it did. Congrats to Paul for sticking with it all these years.

While we're on the subject, my review of The Holdovers, was this Saturday Morning's Review. I have two that I have to work on, X-Men: The Last Stand and Should Ladies Behave, the latter beiing a 1933 pre-code comedy-drama. I don't think the former needs an introduction.

Another happy surprise I received this week was a message from a teacher in Australia that I am linked in with on, well, LinkedIn. He wrote that in one of his classes, he was talking about creativity and character development and mentioned Powers Squared to his students and that they loved the concept. Of course, I was happy to hear that someone likes it, so I spent a couple of hours cleaning up the pages and sent him a reduced .pdf of the first trade to share with anyone in the class that might be interested. I'll be curious if any of them sign up for the newsletter, which was my only request if they liked it.

Besides resizing more pages, I also worked with our artist on a couple of new pages. I'm trying to keep her on two pages a week. She had some ideas that made sense and I had to do a little rewrite to make it work, but I think makes the story better.

Our scheduled guest on our podcast, On the Air with Powers Squaredhad internet issues so we had to reschedule for March. So, we pivoted to The Lightning Thief, the first book of the Percy Jackson series by Rick Riordan. Paul had read the book and we had all watched the Disney+ series and the feature film made before that. You can listen to it here, or watch it next Wednesday on our YouTube channel (@powerssquared).

And if that wasn't enough, we posted a new video this morning, the sixth in our taste test series, this one being 5 of Mr. Beast's Feastables chocolate bars. These sort of videos have been pretty successful for us. Hope you watch.

All of this left me a little time to work on Skylar and my new story. And I haven't yet managed to flex my query muscles, which is something I wanted to do this month.

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

Sunday, February 4, 2024

A Week in Writing #494 - A Lot to Do and So Little Time

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

I don't normally talk about the weather, but today it has been especially rainy here in Los Angeles, where I live. I like rainy days, but I didn't get much writing in, as I was busy with other duties related to Powers Squared.

First on the list was the newsletter, The Hound Dogs' Howl. Most of the writing had been done, but there is always Paul and Trevor's recommendation and, of course, editing. Luckily, I sent myself a test email, since several of the links were holdovers from last month's. Anyway, it is sent out.

Next, I thought I'd start the process of getting proofs made of the four books we're planning to release this year, "Mission Istanistan" Parts 1 and 2, and "Family Affair" Parts 1 and 2. And, of course, nothing is as easy as it should be. Gallery pages were too large on one site and then there is waiting for proofs to be approved and billing to take place, so I'm not done yet.

On our podcast, On the Air with Powers Squared, we had Rik Offenberger, the Editor-in-Chief of First Comics News and G-Man Comics on as our guest. For the most part, the people you meet in the indie comics space are really great people. And Rik is one of the best. He's always been very supportive of Powers Squared and it was nice to have him on the show. He's one of the better guests, in that he also promotes his appearance, which also helps. If downloads on Podbean are any indication, it's our best performance since last October's "Eyeshield 21 21th Anniversary Celebration". You can listen to it on our website or wait to watch it when it hits YouTube on Wednesday.

I also finished a review of The Holdovers for Trophy Unlocked, a film we watched last night on Amazon Prime. While I perfer to see films in a theater, renting it for $2.99 beat out driving to a theater when it was supposed to be raining. I don't know when it will go up but I imagine soon, since it's nominated for several Academy Awards. The Saturday Morning Review this week was Trevor's review of  Ernest & Celestine: A Trip to Gibberitia, a French animated feature from 2022.

On the subject of Trophy UnlockedI predict the blog will reach a million views later this month. That's quite an accomplishment, I think, and I'm happy and proud to be a part of it.

That brings me back to my other writing, which I did do this week, though mostly it was the new story idea I've been working on. I had a couple of thoughts for chapters, so I wrote those up. Skylar is not being forgotten.

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

Sunday, January 28, 2024

A Week in Writing #493 - Let's Talk Powers Squared

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

I'm in sort of a Powers Squiared mood this week. I've been working with, meaning reviewing and giving comments to, our artist, who is working on an issue I wrote, currently called "The Great Escape". We're going two pages at a time, so two more were drawn this week and so far, I can say, I'm happy with the results.

We had a team meeting this week on our podcast, On the Air with Powers Squared. If you're unfamiliar, it's a chance to get everyone who is working on Powers Squared together virtually to talk about what's new with the book. This week, we also had an unboxing of our Volume 2 trade. I got physical copies so that we could see what they would look like when they get printed, though, for a time they are going to be exclusive to LibraryPass.

As always, you can listen to the podcast on our website or at most of the major platforms, also listed on the website. On Wednesday, the video appears on our YouTube channel (@powerssquared).

Paul and I also sat down on Friday afternoon to apply for copyrights on the next four issues that we plan to release this year. It's the final step before we start setting dates for release.

I'm also mentiong Powers Squared this week because next week is the Hound Dogs' Howl newsletter and I want to encourage/ask you to subscribe by enrolling at SRCC, which is free; plus you get a free digital copy of issue #1 as a gift.You can do this at

This week, I wrote a review of Godzilla Minus One/Minus Colorwhich came out on Friday, for Trophy Unlocked. We watched it Saturday afternoon and the review appeared today. If you've read my other reviews, this one is pretty much spoiler free; I don't want to spoil the fun when a film is still out.

The Saturday morning review was Paul's for The Boy and the Heron, which we saw last weekend. This week also saw the return of the Wednesday Game Day with Paul's review of The Last Kids on Earth and the Staff of Doom video game.

This brings me back to Skylar and while I did do some work on it, I spent some time also working on the bit I've written for the next story, in which J.D., the hero of the books, is hired to find a girl who ran away from home 15 years ago.

This coming week, I need to finish the newsletter and work more on Skylar since the path seems clear. I should also work on the next query letter, as I want to get back into that come February; I don't have enough frustration in my life.

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

Sunday, January 21, 2024

A Week in Writing #492 - Working

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

I can actually report that I did work this week on Skylar. I tried to make a point of it, trying hard to get through a chapter every night. Still have more editing to go but I am working on it, so I wanted to get that out front for a change. I don't know when I'll finish but I am working on it.

Work continued this week on some edits for Issue 20. I think we're getting closer, I need to make new .pdfs before we apply for copyrights, so we're behind schedule on that, but these things need to be right before we move on to the next steps.

Meanwhile, working with our artist on pages for Issue 26, so that seems to be going along fairly well.

One last mention of Powers Squared, we had our 12th Comic Book Club on this week's On the Air with Powers Squared. Julia Canon and Rachel Wells joined Trevor, Paul and myself to discuss Bone: Out from Boneville, written and illustrated by Jeff Smith. It's always fun to have guests on the show. You can listen to it on our website: (or a variety of other platforms) or wait until next Wednesday to watch it on our YouTube channel (@powerssquared) at

This week's Saturday Morning Review, was Paul's review of The Last Kids on Earth - Book One (Film), which appeared on Netflix in 2019. It served as a pilot for the other two seasons of the series. He is also working on a review of The Boy and the Heron, which we saw in the theater over the weekend.

The review I wrote this week was for 7th Heaven (1927) which was nominated during the first Academy Award for for Outstanding Picture, losing to Wings for that honor. I was surprised that there was so little information available about it, especially on my go-to website, the AFI Catalog. I was disappointed that the entire synopsis they proved was only one paragraph in length and they had very little information about the production of the film. I like the opportunity to write a better synopsis than is already available and I think I did a pretty good job with it here. I've gotten complaints before that I'm too thorough, but I figure if a film is almost 100 years old and hard to find to watch, someone should tell the story. Not sure when it will appear.

Well, more to do. So, this week I want to finish the .pdfs for Powers Squared and register for copyrights and work more on Skylar as well.

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

Sunday, January 14, 2024

A Week in Writing #491 - Resizing

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

I don't normally lead with the podcast but I think the one we did on Friday might be of interest. Our guest was Doug Neff, the co-author of Epic Win! The Geek's Guide to the Journey From Fan to Creator; the book that is sort of responsible for this weekly blog. We had him on the show a couple of years ago and had him come back to talk about obstacles for creatives and solutions to work around them. If you're writing a comic book or making a video, you might find it interesting. You can listen to it now on our website:, or watch it when it drops on our YouTube channel @powerssquared on Wednesday. The link will be While you're there, if you like the content, you can always subscribe and ring the bell so you'll never miss a video. And a comment wouldn't be bad either.

Most of the week, or at least several hours Monday through Thursday, was spent resizing about 92 pages of future Powers Squared pages for the next four issues. We haven't set on dates yet, but the first will probably come out in March. More to come on that.

If you've been reading this blog for a while, you might remember that Powers Squared was going to be available on LibraryPass in January. Well, that day has come and our first trade, Volume 1, The Adventure Begins is now available at

LibraryPass is a service provided to high schools and colleges that allows readers to digitally check out books, include comic books. So, if you know someone at those levels, tell them to ask their librarian to choose Powers Squared.

On to other writing, my review of Illicit from about three years ago went up as the Saturday Morning Review on Trophy Unlocked. I also wrote new one for a film called Leap Year (1921). I picked the film for the obvious, 2024 is a leap year, but this was one of Roscoe "Fatty" Arbuckle's Paramount films that was shelved after he was charged with manslaughter in connection with the death of Virginia Rappe. Charges he was acquitted on in 1922, by the way. You should be able to read it on the 29th of February.

I was able to spend sometime this week with Skylar. I'm trying to get through a chapter a day with editing. So, I can say I'm actually working on it for a change.

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

Sunday, January 7, 2024

A Week in Writing #490 - Getting Stuff Done

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

In last week's post, I felt like I took the week off, though not really. This week, I worked on several projects, including the newsletter The Hound Dog's Howl; a new issue of Powers Squared, a review for Trophy Unlocked, and, yes, actually work on Skylar.

We've begun work on issue #26 for Powers Squared currently called "The Great Escape". It picks up where Issue 18, "Mocha and Raven, Part 3" left off, at least as it concerns Dr. Atlas, the book's main villian. Our artist, Julia Canon, is working on the first eight pages and we gave her some feedback on the pages she had submitted so far.

On the subject of Powers Squared, I spent part of the week working on the monthly newsletter, including doing a write up about twins in the No More Heroes video game franchise, Travis Touchdown and Henry Cooldown. That's really the hardest part of the newsletter, doing a write up on twins, and usually ones I know next to nothing about starting out.

The final note about Powers Squared is my weekly plug for On the Air with Powers Squared. This week's topic was about characters, like Mickey and Minnie Mouse from Steamboat Willie going into public domain. And while we're not lawyers, we tried to dicuss some of the things you can and cannot do with those characters. There's a link in the newsletter to the audio podcast and the video comes out on Wednesday the 10th here if you can wait until 2:30 PT.

The review I was working on, and finished for that matter, is a silent film called Too Many Kisses (1925). The film had been considered lost, but a 16mm print was found and the film has been restored. I had tried to record the film when it was on TCM sometime back, but something happened to the recording, let's say I accidentally deleted it. I ended up buying the Blu-ray from the Film Preservation Society. I'm not sure when it will appear on Trophy Unlocked, but I do know that the first review this year on the blog was Paul's review of Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret. He had read the book recently and we were able to watch the film during our unofficial Movie Day (Dec 26).

I am happy to report that I did actually work on Skylar this week. I'm still in rewrite mode, but it feels good to make some progress on the book.

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