State Of Play

I just wanted to share an update with how the writing is going at the moment. I’ll admit I’ve barely done much actual writing in the last few weeks but with Tracie(my partner) being in hospital for the best part of three weeks, having a couple of minor health irritations myself (I say irritations because they are very minor but incredibly irritating!) All that has knocked me off my pace a little.

Project Apollo will not have much done on it till early July as that is when me and Owen are sitting down to go through and plot out the ending of the story.

The Residents is still in the planning stages. When me and Chrystalyn (http://thefutureofhope.wordpress.com/) start writing this I think it’s going to be the most prepared that I personally have ever been when it comes to writing something. At the moment I am mainly focusing on two of the main characters backstory’s.

I was going to work on my zombie story for NaNoWriMo but I’ve had an idea about it today which may require a little more thinking time. I’ve always had in mind to write a second story in this series but I had a flash of an idea on what a third story might involve which makes it a trilogy. So I now need to think out how it is going to play out over three books. I know the basics of each story but I need to build them more thoroughly and I’m not sure I will have that done by November.

I think I have enough feedback from one of my short stories which I am going to read through once more myself, and maybe change the title of before I start sending it off for submission.

With Avoiding The Game I have decided to give it one last bash at making it work, but I will have to make a fair few changes to the story so I have all but decided to do a full re-write as it will be easier then trying to fit in what I have in mind.

At the moment I am reading Redshirts by John Scalzi. I am really enjoying it and I’m finding Scalzi’s  style to my liking and the humour in this novel is awesome 🙂 With everything that has happened recently I haven’t been reading much so hopefully this week I’ll get back into the swing of it.

And finally I’d just like to share a couple of links to interesting podcasts that I’ve heard lately. First we have two from The Dead Robots Society; http://deadrobotssociety.com/2013/06/11/episode-276-mid-year-check-in/; http://deadrobotssociety.com/2013/06/18/episode-277-robots-on-inspiration-point/

Next is an episode from the Escape Pod Science Fiction podcast. This is quite a snappy little story that I fell in love with and adored how it ended;  http://escapepod.org/2013/06/06/ep399-my-heart-is-a-quadratic-equation/

And Finally here’s one from the StarShipSofa podcast. The story in this episode is written by Tobias S. Buckell and Karl Schroeder. I am familiar with both writers and I found this story was a great collaboration between two people whose work I enjoy;  http://www.starshipsofa.com/2013/05/21/starshipsofa-no-290-tobias-buckell-and-karl-schroeder/

 

I apologise for loading this post up with links but I believe in spreading the word about all things good and these are all very good. So I hope you check them out and get as much pleasure out of them as I have 🙂

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Some Good Stuff

Hey guys, I’ve got a couple of links here to some good fiction that I have heard in the last few days. Its been a while since I’ve heard some sort fiction that I have enjoyed enough to share so here it is 🙂

 

Escape Pod

http://escapepod.org/2013/03/07/ep386-finished/

 

Pseudopod

http://pseudopod.org/2013/03/08/pseudopod-324-wings/

 

StarShipSofa

http://www.starshipsofa.com/2013/03/06/starshipsofa-no-279-rachel-swirsky/

 

I hope you take a moment to check these stories out as I enjoyed them hugely 😀

 

Id also like to share this link for a recent episode of the Dead Robots Society where the Robots interview writer Jake Bible. Mr. Bible wrote a book called Dead Mech which is set in a world after the Zombie apocalypse and in this world there are huge military mech suits and when an operator dies inside one and gets infected, becoming a zombie the zombie then controls this piece of military hardware.

It’s a really good story which is the first of three books, I still need to read the second two.

I first found Mr. Bible via Scott Sigler. Sigler mentioned Dead Mech and collaborated with Mr.Bible on a story so I checked the story out and loved it. It had been released as a podcast.  Now though Mr.Bible has decided to walk away from podcasting and here he gives his reasons.

Again I would love for you to go and check these out as there is some amazing content here.

A Productive End To A Dire Month

Today, I wrote just over 700 hundred words on a story that was baffling me and Owen for about a month now, but hopefully Owen is happy with it and we can get the story wrapped up.  I popped up a 700ish word blog post as well so I’ve written a lot today which I’m rather chuffed about 🙂 I’m halfway through some time off so I have done very little, aside from chilling and a trip to Colchester Zoo with my Girlfriend (We’re almost came home with a little monkey, or two lol)

I’m on the home stretch of the book I’m reading, then begins the task of choosing the next book that I’m going to read.

A few months ago I saw Cabin In The Woods and I’ve got to say that I really liked it.  I liked the way it played with the traditional views of this type of film.

Aside from that there’s not much to say.  I’m hoping this is the end of the writer’s block and will be steaming into June with the intent to get some fiction written.

Can I recommend checking out this episode of the Escape Pod podcast http://escapepod.org/2011/08/04/ep304-union-dues-%e2%80%93-sidekicks-in-stockholm/ it’s a story by Jeffery R. DeRego in his Union Dues universe and I just loved this story, like I have done all the other stories in this universe.

As always feel free to follow on Twitter and ‘Like’ on Facebook >>>>>>>>>>

Looking Back At 2011

Okay so I wanted to give a quick look back at the last year and what has happened to me and what I’ve learnt.  Firstly I hit my 1000 word a week target.  I’ve started writing this on the 12th and I’ve written 77,839 words to this date.  I wont lie I’m quite cuffed about that 😀 Despite failing NaNoWriMo it played a big part in building that word count and taught me a lot about my writing and where I want it to go ( https://petergermany.wordpress.com/2011/11/28/looking-back-at-nanowrimo/ ) click the link to take you to a post where I talk about NaNo and what I learnt.

As for progress of my fiction I am disappointed to say that I have not submitted anything yet.  I have no long fiction even close to being ready for submission but I do have a number of short stories which are very close to being ready to be sent out into the wide world.  Most of those form part of a series of stories that I’m not sure I want to set free just yet.  I have a couple of others that just need a little fine tuning before I search out the best places to submit them.

I do think that a couple of the ideas that I and my writing partner have look to be coming to life a little.  So those in the New Year they will get some serious attention.

I know that I rarely speak of my personal life but here I will, just not in too much detail.  I’ve had a few ups and downs this last year.  Nothing out of  what any one of us may expect to encounter during our lives.  I have had friendships pushed to the limits and have learnt who my real friends are.  I’ve been pushed to my breaking point on more than one occasion which has taught me a lot about myself.

BEST MOVIE I’VE SEEN THIS YEAR

This is quite a tough one for me as I’ve seen a lot of good films this year.

The Kings Speech deserves a mention.  Like many people I didn’t really think it would be my type of film but I absolutely loved it.

X-Men:First Class was better than I was expecting (and I was expecting it to be good) Heres my review https://petergermany.wordpress.com/2011/08/02/x-men-first-class/

Captain America : The First Avenger did also blow me away,  https://petergermany.wordpress.com/2011/08/09/captain-america-the-first-avenger/

Thor also impressed me a lot.  I liked how the humour worked in the film (and it has Natalie Portman in it 😀 ) It was fascinating to see the world that Thor comes from and how some of the little sub plots and characters tie into the movie franchise that has been created which is leading up the Avengers movie.

And just for sheer enjoyment purposes Tucker and Dale Vs. Evil https://petergermany.wordpress.com/2011/10/23/movie-review-tucker-dale-vs-evil/ This film was daft but very funny with a lot of heart.

BEST BOOK I’VE READ THIS YEAR

This one has to be Metro 2033 by Dmitry Glukhovsky  https://petergermany.wordpress.com/2011/10/13/book-review-metro-2033-by-dmitry-glukhovsky/ This book really did blow my mind.  Even now new things about the depth of the book and all within its pages are coming to mind.  Once I’ve cleared more of my ‘To Read’ backlog then I’m going to read it again.  Theres not many books that I can say that about.

BEST SHORT STORY

This one is Conditional Love by Felicity Shoulders (http://felicityshoulders.com/) which I heard via the Escape Pod Podcast  http://escapepod.org/2011/02/11/ep279-conditional-love/ Its one of the few stories that made me actually stop what I was doing and say “Wow!”

BEST NEW PODCAST I’VE FOUND

This one goes to Adventures In Sci-Fi Publishing http://www.adventuresinscifipublishing.com/ This podcast has taught me a lot about how to approach some of the aspects of writing and how to go about publishing.  There are some fine interviews with various writers, editors and people within the writing community.  Shaun Farrell, Moses Siregar III and Brent Bowen are a fine team and very easy to listen to, although I do miss Sam Wynns.  I especially like the segments with Lou Anders (editor at Pyr  http://www.pyrsf.com/ ) and Tobias S. Buckell, http://www.tobiasbuckell.com/.

Since I’ve started blogging more frequently I’ve met some amazing people through blogging that I’ve got some very good support from and I’ve taken a lot from their own blogs.  It’s such a strong and supportive community which is fantastically insightful as well.  Keep an eye on my Twitter feed for fascinating posts from other bloggers.

Now I am looking forward to next year and what I intend to achieve in the twelve months we are about to go into.  Christmas is upon us and New Years Eve I think will be one to remember, but next year, I want that to be an entire year that I look back on and think ‘2012 was really something special’

Escape Artists

The first podcast that I ever listened to was An Escape Pod episode, the first one in fact.  I’m one of these people who when I start listening to A podcast I listen to the earliest episode that I can find.  I had never really known of short stories until Escape Pod grabbed me and its been one amazing journey since then.

Escape Pod taught me that Sci-Fi is not just spaceships and robots.  It took me into worlds that I had never realised existed.  The Trouble With Death Traps by Marjorie James is one of my early favourites.  Feng Burger by John Aegard is still one that I think often about.  The Girlfriends Of Dorian Grey by Gregory Frost was also very impressive.  Here I could on for ages listing episodes that really hit home but that would just turn into A list of many episodes, Okay one more. Conditional Love By Felicity Shoulders really hit home.  A great story.

I’m A little out of date with the podcast now as my PC is still broken 😦 so I havent heard how the Podcast is going.  I do miss Steve Eley but I’m A big fan of Mighty Mur Lafferty and I like what she has done with the Podcast since she took the reigns.  She has such an easy, warm approached that has to of come from many years podcasting that must make newcomers feel at ease with the podcast before the story even begins, she’s A damn fine narrator too.

http://escapepod.org/

Pseudopod is the horror wing of Escape Artists.  I love listening to this podcast but it rarely ever shocks me.  It again did the same thing that Escape Pod did, in the way that it showed me horror is not just gore  like Hollywood would have us think. Alasdair Stewart and Ben Phillips are great with this podcast.  Stewart’s deadpan delivery of the intro and outro’s are fascinating and keep A heart to the podcast.  Again he is A fine narrator also.

http://pseudopod.org/

Podcastle has been the only part of the Escape Artists family that I had not taken too, until recently.  As I mentioned my Pc is broken which means I cannot update my iPod so I’ve been working through some of the podcasts that I had laying dormant on my iPod and I finally gave Podcastle A proper run.  I had listened to A few of the episodes but they had never really caught me. I’m not A big fan of fantasy.  I was never A man for Unicorns or Dragons and so on, but again Podcastle had done what Escape Pod and Pseudopod have done in showing me that these genre’s are wide open.

http://podcastle.org/

Fantasy is not just Elves and Wizards, Sci-Fi is not just alien invasions nano-tech and Horror is not demons under the bed or hockey mask wearing psycho’s.  All genre overlap into each other and this can only make fiction better.  These Podcasts have given me fiction that have made me smile, cry and sigh.  The Good, The Bad and The Ugly.

Escape Artists has given me more hours  of joy than I could possibly count.  I wonder how many people would like to buy Steve Eley A drink and say ‘Thank You Dude’  I will forever be grateful for what you have given me.  If it was not for Steve then I may never have discovered Scott Sigler, Phil Rossi, J.C. Hutchins, Mur Lafferty, Elizabeth Bear, Jeffery R. DeRego, Ted Chiang, The amazing Tim Pratt and so many others.  As well as finding the podcasts like StarShipSofa.  http://www.starshipsofa.com/

If you like short fiction that look at these genre’s then check these links out.  They really are something special 🙂

PC Died :(

Ten days ago my PC decided to die, it’s basically stopped sending a signal to my monitor which means I can’t see anything at all.  For all I know it may not even be powering up properly.  Thankfully I have a laptop which is not yet eighteen months old, but ALL of my iTunes is on my PC as I don’t want to overload my laptop with 2500 songs and about 5000 podcasts.  I have not been able to update my iPod since then, this is very, very bad as I am now out of date with Escape Pod, StarshipSofa, Pseudopod, Scott Sigler’s podcast, Fighting Talk and the list could go on for a fair while.  Yes I could download them onto my Laptop and sync my iPod to that but then I lose all the content that I have on my trusty old iPod Classic.  I can charge it without syncing so I thought “stuff it, I’ve got thousands of podcast episodes to get through so I should use this hiatus in my ability to sync to cut into some of these podcasts that I havent listened to yet”  So I have been.  Well, kind of anyway.  I’ve only really started listening to one that I havent before.  Adventures In SciFi Publishing is really, really bloody good! 

The two presenters Shaun and Sam are very funny and clearly know what they are talking about.  There is discussion of how the publishing world works as well as interviews with authors which are very insightful.  There is such an easy feel to this podcast that has made it very easy to listen to.  Like StarshipSofa you get A real enthusiasm from the people involved and an insight into the SciFi community as a whole.

For me Podcasts like this are gold-dust as they give me A look into a world that I am not part yet.  Listening to StarshipSofa and Adventures In SciFi Publishing have introduced me to names in the genre that I need to know about.  I had never known of Issac Asimov or Phillip K. Dick and the rest of these SciFi legends that I am ashamed to say that I’ve not really read, Although Asimov ‘sFoundation was amazing.  I’ve also got waiting to be read Do Androids Dream Of Electric Sheep? and 2001: A Space Odyssey by Arthur C. Clarke.  I know that I don’t have to read these grandmasters of the genre but I feel that I must.  When I listen to people talking about how these authors influenced their lives I feel like I’ve been left out somehow.  I know people say that they are out dated and so on, but so is Romeo And Juliet. 

back to the dead PC though.  THankfully none of my writing that I am working on is on my PC, well what there is there is backed upped on to my laptop so its only the loss of my ability to sync iTunes that is lost, until payday and then I can get it fixed!!! 😀