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Having now run a table at a convention, I can say that pursuing artistic employment is harder than I though it would be.  It’s tough because the only stories that matter are the ones available to purchase at that moment.  The only images that matter are the ones people can see without any prompting.

This is no different than usual.

I enjoyed my experience at Cape Comic Con.  I’m sure I’ll do it again, if all goes well.

Maiden of the Star Stairs

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Appearing at Cape Comic Con is a big deal for me, not just because it’s my first con selling things.  This is an opportunity to really test myself, to see how good I am at sharing my creativity with the public as a whole.

I’m not just going to share my writing at the show.  I have art as well.  And not just prints.

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No, that’s near-genius, not super genius.

Lately, that’s what I’ve been calling myself, a near-genius.  I took an IQ test in high school and missed the cutoff for genius by five points.  That’s why I call myself a near-genius; I’m nearly a genius, but not quite.

I bring it up because I notice the constant trend of fantasy and science fiction books when it comes to terminology.  Many of these writers come up with words.  Each of these falsified terms has a role to play in defining characters and shaping the world of the story.

There is an alternative.

In many of his books, Gene Wolfe doesn’t make up any words for his stories.  In The Book of the New Sun, he uses terms like fuligin and fiacre to describe colors and carriages.  These are archaic or foreign words, but they are existing words.  Why do we have to make something up when there’s a perfectly good word already waiting for us?

Just something to think about.

Standardized Exploitation

The novel I’m showing to agents currently is Blanc Noir, which was born in part from seeing so many forms of exploitation in modern society.  While the main thrust of the story is an investigation, the setting thrives on taking advantage of the masses, usually to make an extra dollar or two.

What kind of writer would I be if I suddenly ignored situations of exploitation when they continue to spring up?  Finishing drafts of a novel doesn’t exempt me from noticing such things, especially when I will have to work on further drafts in the future.  In the interest of sharing what’s important to me, and possibly making you laugh, here’s a clip from John Oliver’s Last Week Tonight:

School administrators sitting in posh offices while the athletes bringing in revenue starve; promising an education only to strip it away when an athlete gets injured; issuing penalties for someone giving a young man lunch–it all echoes of a nightmare government.  This is the sort of thing that makes me glad that the villain organization in my book is called the Chamber of Commerce.

To Live After Death

My Dad always said he wanted a “Cajun Funeral” when he died–a party full of laughter, food, and good memories, not a cloud of tears.  In all honesty, we did our best.

As writers, most of those who know us would not be able to attend such a gathering, no matter the mood.  Readers mourn in similar ways as friends and family, but without a way to directly show their appreciation and love.

With the recent passing of Terry Pratchett, I’d like to share what I do as a reader to mark the passing of an author of note.

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Patreon: An Idea

A friend asked me months ago if I was on Patreon.  I looked into it and started to wonder if I should join.  After all, I’m artistic and having a patron of any sort would be wonderful.

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The Facts

You may have heard of Joe Friday, you may not.  He’s famous for his attention to the facts.

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It’s story time and it’s time I caught up with everyone.  Luckily, I can do both at once right now.

Today’s story is about courage.

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For years, I’ve managed to stockpile drawings in several sketchbooks, some of which I’ve shared here in the past.  I’m pleased to say I am taking the next step and compiling a collection of these images and making them available for purchase.


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Your Opinion Please

In putting together a small art book, I’ve looked at a recent drawing and found myself conflicted.  Here is the picture in question.

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