Friday, April 29, 2011

An iPad Love Story

You saw the iPad for the first time. It was all the things you weren't. It was shiny and thin. You thought if only Apple had made you, you'd be thin too. It was a look you can never forget.


Then you weaseled one out of your boss, husband, wife, brother, sister, mother...or even God forbid...you won one from a radio station contest. It made you feel like this:
You downloaded apps. You downloaded Angry Birds and made excuses that you were going to the bathroom at work when in fact you just wanted to get to the next level. Then someone else got a non-Apple product and they tried to show it to you. You pitied them.
You found a mutual friend who was confused. They asked you if Apple was better than the other tablets like Samsung or Toshiba. How could they ask this?!? So you stared at them until they got it.

But your friend was still confused. They didn't get it...
Should I even look at the other tablets? Are those other brands better? You answered the best you could while being professional about it.
So they took your advice. They bought the iPad. You thought it was over. But then they walked in with the iPad 2. They showed you all the new features. It was even slimmer, had a camera, and had a new case. Jealousy set-in. You tried to dismiss it...you clapped for your friend.
You knew what needed to be done. You were ready. You were now a master at Angry Birds and boy were you pissed! How could they do this? How could they usurp you with better technology. You had led them to the promised land and now...this?! You planned the perfect murder.

When someone told you that your mutual friend had been found dead. You tried to look sad. "How terrible," you said. "How could this happen?"
You offered to take their brand new iPad 2 to remember them by. Everyone agreed. It should be yours. It was the...

The END
Have a Great Weekend, See you Monday <3

Thursday, April 28, 2011

So You Want To Write A Fantasy For The Boys At GenCon?

DISCLAIMER: This post is full of sarcasm. Read at your own peril. I honestly don't mean anything that I've put down here.

Oh the boys of Gencon. I happen to be one of them. We are such nerds. That being said, I think I've isolated the formula for getting these girlfriend-less men to read your epic fantasy. And it goes something like this:

SIX STEPS TO WRITING FANTASY:

1) GET YOUR SETTING STRAIGHT: Write a historical account as accurate as possible to how life was really like in the middle ages in Europe. You want all the nitty-gritty details and armor as close to authentic as you can get. If possible, join some S.C.A. group and hang out with real medieval society nerds to get the authenticity down.  Then, once you've written that, add one fantastic element...a huge wall or a colossal tower (could be phallic) that scrapes the sky and have people wander around the base of it and wonder how it got there. People don't want to hear about your unicorns and other stuff. They want fantasy...and that means reality (but not really).  Like think reality but with a frickin' dragon in it. But don't go overboard with that dragon. It HAS TO BE REAL.

2) GET YOUR MYTHOLOGY RIGHT: People need to spout off about common things as if they're extraordinary. The sun isn't just a ball of fire...it's the God Apollo racing nude across the sky after the most beautiful Goddess (think Aphrodite). Then there's this story of how he caught her and ravished her but she got away right before his...moment... and when he squirted...and well...that stuff became the moon.  People will read that shit and think...wow...dat's amazin' mang.

3) DON'T BE ORIGINAL IN YOUR OPPRESSION: Think Braveheart here. Channel Mel Gibson and his hatred of minorites. People don't want to hear about how your homosexuals are suddenly empowered and have an intelligent society. They want the same as has been fed to them over and over. Make sure your homosexuals are nancy boys that get slapped around by real men. Make sure your women are all seamstresses and when they aren't doing that, they're in the kitchen cooking up what the men brought home for dinner. You think...hasn't this been done before?  IT doesn't matter...men will read this and then support it by saying, "But this is the world that the author created and as far as world-building goes...it's brilliant." Ayep.

4) WHITE-WASH YOUR FANTASY: No one wants Hispanic Kings unless they're meant to die. Negroes are good as servants or as barbarians but not as knights, lords, and ladies. Write about white men and women and their white kids. Give em blue eyes and washboard abs. That'll get a minority female audience to read your stuff too (ka-ching). This goes for everyone...check your manuscripts to make sure you have caucasians well-represented :) They are the Master Race. Hitler said it so it must be true.

5) WOMEN ARE VILLAINS: They don't have the strength to knock skulls in so make them clever and conniving bitches and you've got yourself a bestseller. Men will proclaim proudly, "Oh I love how the women are so empowered in these books." They will also proclaim it and recommend the book to all of their female friends perhaps buying them copies. "Is this book good?" a woman will ask. The guy will answer, "Definitely. It's all about women coming into their own power."

6) RATED-R: Describe big bewbs, throw in some gore when crushing monsters, and mention that big tower thing that I said you need to have in step 1 a lot. Maybe compare the tower to a guy's manhood or something. Have monsters that want the tower and men defend it from the monsters with much bashing and hewing of flesh and bone. Then more big bewbs that the men fight over.  It'll be brilliant, you'll be considered a creative genius, and they'll pay you $$$$$$.

Remember me when you're famous. Good luck.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

If You're An Alpha Male, You Really Should Love George R.R. Martin

George R.R. Martin is the alpha male's version of Stephenie Meyer. For every sparkly vampire there's a woman on her knees getting it doggy style. For every sigh and stare, there's blood and monsters. There's enough conniving women to fill roles for a reboot of Dynasty.

I love the Game of Thrones on HBO. That being said, I was re-reading portions of it the other day that have been at the root of several discussions with my friend James on the phone (he worships at the pen of the mighty George). It went something along the lines of my usual take on Mr. Martin, which I think has merit, despite the fact that the overall consensus from most men is that George R.R. Martin is a genius (and therefore his work is irrefuteable).  So here I am...laying it out there for you to examine with a bit of his colorful prose:
"When she was clean, the slaves helped her from the water and toweled her dry. The girl brushed her hair until it shone like molten silver, while the old woman anointed her with the spiceflower perfume of the Dothraki plains, a dab on each wrist, behind her ears, on the tips of her breasts, and one last one, cool on her lips, down there between her legs."
                  -- page 32

I especially liked how he described it being cool on the lips...almost as if he'd experienced it himself. So imaginative.  You know...I'm gonna say it...there really is a huge double-standard here. If the storyline was the same and the characters essentially the same but instead of an underage girl, it was an underage boy, having his anus annointed for the Dothraki Chieftan Khal Drogo...this would be unpublishable. Not only that, but people would shout, "PERVERT!!!" No one would say, "Oh this is just sooo amazing and sure there's the part with the boy getting it up the ass but that's all explained in the world-building etc. I mean there's no author intent there at all...what a genius."
"Her loins still ached from the urgency of his lovemaking. It was a good ache. She could feel his seed within her. She prayed that it might quicken there."
                 -- page 59

Hmmm. I always wondered what you women were thinking about after a good roll in the hay? Oh boy...did George nail it or what?!? Let's be honest now, you ladies out there...when you were finished with your husbands and boyfriends or whomever, you too (like Catelyn) lay in your beds with your furs to your chins and prayed for a quickening, right?

This is George. He writes books for alpha males
and those that like alpha males.
Game of Thrones is an epic fantasy and I do like it. But you know, it does redefine the word fantasy as I came to know it. For example...there's the fantasy of Tolkien which we all know about...and then there's the fantasy of the sexually repressed man, right? But Game of Thrones manages to be both and I think therein lies its brilliance and appeal to men.

I love you George. Every alpha male guy in the world needs to read your books and maybe after that go hunting, fishing, and eat some red meat right off the bone while pounding his chest.

I salute you! hee hee




Monday, April 25, 2011

I Give You A Baby Penguin

This little guy is adorable. At about 1:05 one of the zookeepers tickles the baby penguin and you can hear it laughing. It's incredible...I've never heard a penguin laugh before.


Happy Monday!

Friday, April 22, 2011

A Jawa HQ, Star Trek: TNG Porn, & Vampire Dental Health

This is a picture of the new Lucasfilm building that's being erected in Singapore. To fans of the Star Wars franchise, ayep, it is intentionally designed to look like a Jawa Sandcrawler which is just plain awesome.

Since synopsis are on the mind of most of the writers out there that are in the query process, I thought you might like to see the synopsis of the new Star Trek: The Next Generation XXX porn parody that's being released.  Here it is:

While en route to Starbase 112, the Enterprise detects strange electromagnetic readings emanating from a barren M-Class planet. Upon further investigation, it is discovered that the source of energy is in fact a box containing Tasha Yar (India Summer), the long dead former Chief of Security of the ship, in cryosleep. Is she the real Tasha Yar? Is she a clone? Or is she something completely different?
The two highlights? It features famous Jean-Luc Picard impersonator Giles Aston in the role of  Enterprise captain Jean Luc Picard—and the return of Tasha Yar!

I guess that Giles Aston is not getting out of his Starfleet uniform for the film. The man's strictly playing Capt. Picard as straight as can be (which would actually be quite in character).

Second, adult film maker Revolution X has clearly put a lot of effort and money into its re-creation of the Next Gen ship, costumes and makeup.

With regard to the new Superman movie, Diane Lane (pictured at below left) was locked up by Zack Snyder for three hours while she read the script. Here's a quote:
"I read the script under lock and key. ... I was locked in a room with the script and was only allowed three hours with it. I nailed it into my memory. I'm really excited. I'm really not allowed to talk much about it, I think, but it does cover the entire range of years, from infancy on."
Diane Lane got locked up to read.
Can you imagine doing that with an agent? That'd be hilarious. *Pushes agent in room with latte and manuscript and locks door* Well hilarious for anyone that read about it...not so much for the poor agent.

And to show you just how far the Twilight saga reaches--if you've been living in a box this is a set of vampire books that gets made fun of in just about every way from digs on the show "Supernatural" to internet memes and .gifs to finally, the Jersey Shore crew. Well now the NHS  in the UK has stepped in on the bandwagon and produced a dental health commercial for...well...vampires. But the message is clear:

If a vampire has any hopes of getting it on, he'd better keep those fangs of his clean. Which is the National Health Service's way of letting guys  know that if they want to get it on, they'd better do the same.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Karmin Covers Chris Brown

This video went viral about two days ago. I like it better than the original. The female singer is absolutely amazing. Please watch this to the point where she does the lyrics that are done by Busta Rhymes (who sings so fast it is like an auctioneer rattling off lyrics). I was amazed when I saw it and thought, "Wow...what a difficult song to do."

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Dungeons & Dragons Sheldon Cooper Style - Bazinga!

Today my friends, I give you sixteen precious lessons lifted from the brain of Dr. Sheldon Cooper applicable to fantasy writing and the lives of nerds everywhere.
  1. Any plan that causes the DM to ask, "Are you sure you want to do that?" should be rethought immediately.
  2. Never play leapfrog with a unicorn.
  3. You can't succeed at anything unless you roll the dice.
  4. Never ever throw a fireball in a closed room.
  5. Never be the first person to touch an unknown substance.
  6. Hitting on the King's daughter is never a good idea.
  7. If you spend enough time in sleazy bars talking to shady characters, adventure will find you.
  8. Always have an exit strategy.
  9. Siege artillery doesn't discriminate.
  10. Never use a weapon that's braver than you are.
  11. If the DM is smiling, it's already too late.
  12. Never ever give the Dungeon Master ideas.
  13. If something looks too good to be true, check for traps at once.
  14. Never summon anything that you don't know how to dismiss.
  15. Treat your hirelings well; they're the ones carrying all of your loot.
  16. If all else fails, bribe the DM with pizza.
And a bonus from my friend James:

Never ever be without a Wall of Iron. You can drop it on someone and they go splat.

There you have it and Happy Wednesday.

*DISCLAIMER: If you don't get the above stuff then you are not nearly nerdy enough and should go and buy a Player's Handbook and Dungeon Master's Guide and hang out with some young men in a game store. You'll find that they're very imaginative as they dream of a day when they can have a +5 Holy Avenger!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Statistics I Baked For You Nom Nom Nom

Know Your Audience:
1/3 of high school graduates never read another book for the rest of their lives.
42 percent of college graduates never read another book after college.
80 percent of U.S. families did not buy or read a book last year.
70 percent of U.S. adults have not been in a bookstore in the last five years.
57 percent of new books are not read to completion.
70 percent of books published do not earn back their advance.
70 percent of the books published do not make a profit.
(Source: Jerold Jenkins, http://www.jenkinsgroupinc.com/)

53 percent read fiction, 43 percent read nonfiction. The favorite fiction category is mystery and suspense, at 19 percent.
55 percent of fiction is bought by women, 45 percent by men.
(Source: Publishers Weekly)

About 120,000 books are published each year in the U.S. from traditional publishers (not self-publishing warehouses like Amazon and Smashwords).

A successful fiction book sells 5,000 copies.
A successful nonfiction book sells 7,500 copies.
(Source: Authors Guild, http://www.authorsguild.org/)

On average, a bookstore browser spends 8 seconds looking at a book's front cover and 15 seconds looking at the back cover.
(Source: Para Publishing, http://www.parapub.com/)

Each day in the U.S., people spend 4 hours watching TV, 3 hours listening to the radio and 14 minutes reading magazines.
(Source: Veronis, Suhler & Associates investment banker)
Happy Writing Tuesday!

Monday, April 18, 2011

The Wheaton Paradigm As Applied To Twitter--Sheldon Would Be So Proud


BAZINGAAAAA!!!


I hope you watched the premiere of George R.R. Martin's "Game of Thrones" last night on HBO. It was really good but if you missed it, you can probably catch it again sometime soon. That being said, comment if you really liked the series :).

Hee hee Happy Monday my friends. This is gonna be an amazing week :) Spring is finally here, flowers are growing, and warm air and sunshine have decided to appear.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Face It Peeps, The Dark Side Is Cooler + A Hobbit V-Blog

If you ever go to Disney World or Disneyland, you can see a show called "Jedi Training Academy," a Star Wars-based fight show where children in the audience get to participate. YouTuber Erndog714 recorded the scene where youngling Sariah Gallego took the stage. And owned it.

In case you're wondering, you aren't supposed to join sides with Darth Vader. Although, I don't see why not because the bad guys are clearly much cooler than the good guys in Star Wars.



The actors at Disneyland obviously needed a few moments to respond before their improv training kicked in.

And not to deluge you with YouTube videos (I do spend some time there) but here's a video of all the preproduction stuff regarding the making of "The Hobbit" which comes to theaters December 2012 and 2013.  So assuming that the end of the world doesn't happen, grab your popcorn.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Iron Man 2 Faceplate Contest, The iPhone 4 Is My New Lovely, & Marcel the Shell

I wanntsss the Iron Man 2 Faceplate
Jo Schaffer over at her blog entitled "Shoveling In A Jo Storm" has the most amazing contest that is appealing to every nerd fiber in my body. Here's the short of it: her husband works in the movie industry and he's branching out from being one of those that works in the backlot of the film to actually trying to put together his own independent film. This is an admirable goal in my opinion, but to do so, he needs money. So he's looking for more exposure to his Kickstarter project which I've linked here.

At the time I'm writing this blog, he has 89 more fund-raising days and has got 8 backers that have pledged $1,495.00.

Now, of course, by both blogging and tweeting this, I get an entry to try and win the super cool face plate of the Iron Man face plate made by Clark (the lady's husband) for the Iron Man 2 movie. So far, I think I've been really lucky with blog contests. I love commenting on them and I won a $25 gift certificate from Ciara Knight's blog and I won a cool hardcover book called Godlike Machines from Jay at Bookrastination.  I think Jay has taken a bit of a hiatus from blogging but I won the book prior to that.

If you are nerdy like me, I think you should hop over to Jo Schaffer's blog and get an entry into this contest. I mean the Iron Man 2 face mask is a huge collector's item. If I win it, I'm getting it framed.


I HAS AN iPHONE 4 PRECIOUSSS...

I do...I do... and you know what makes it even cooler...this frickin case.  I mean there are a lot of cases out there...ones that make your phone look like a cassette tape or an old style rockin' prehistoric phone etc.  But this lets you put Legos on it...yes my lovely friends...I said Legos.

It's only $20.00 on Amazon and according to Gizmodo, works great with any Lego bricks :))) Just think of the possibilities...if you want you could put a flower on your case.  Or alternately Darth Vader (see picture). Course you could do both and be super versatile.

Now when I got my new iPhone I had to pick and choose between AT&T and Verizon. This was harder than it appeared. Eventually, I decided to stay with AT&T because basically they had more features despite the fact that I seem to get a lot of dropped calls. I still have no idea if I chose correctly or not.  But here were the selling points:

1) If you go with AT&T you can talk on the phone and surf on the web at the same time. I've done this successfully a few times before in important situations at work so not being able to do that was mostly sucksauce, ya know?

2) I get rollover minutes with AT&T which means my bill could go down $20.00 a month from what it is now and I still keep my 9,000 rollover minutes which is just insane.  Verizon has no rollover minutes.

3) I was grandfathered into the unlimited data plan with AT&T. They don't offer this anymore and with Verizon, all I'd get would be 2GB a month and then they'd start charging. Ugh. So yeah...considerations (seeing as I'm not rich I need to make wise choices to have the stuff I want).

I'm leaving you with this video I found on YouTube. If you watch one video, please watch this. It is hilarious and reminds me of Steven Wright's comedy sketches from the early nineties. He was the comic that would deliver these one liners like "Why is the alphabet in that order? Is it because of the song?"

PLEASE TAKE THE TIME TO WATCH...I mean it. IT'S FUNNY, I pinky promise you'll not regret it.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Twitterpation Nation--Twitter Part Two


Here you can see the two frontal lobes I'm
speaking of as they hypnotize America and
bolster her impressive thinking skills.
Don't you wish the hemispheres of your
brain were as tan and symmetrical?
I think I have frontal lobe envy.
Sn00ki is the kind of smart that America appreciates.

She knows nothing of Thoreau, organic chemistry, math, physics, or life as a pale person, but she has charisma.  And because of that, she's got money...lots of it. And in America's eye, money equals brains. She's a genius? Forget that Einstein person...what the hell did he know?  Oh and you won a frickin' Nobel prize...pfft...we want Sn00ki and will pay her more to speak to us (reference Rutgers University).

She didn't write her book. Who cares? It was a bestseller. Someone wrote it and slapped her poof on the cover. So I turned my nitwit mind that was given to me to understand such things as Lagrangian calculus to twitter to see if I could see how her large frontal lobes were somehow a force equal to the swarm of human locusts in colonizing America's "Shores" (C whut I did thar?)

Why did I pick Sn00ki? Because she's better than you...at twitter! That's right...she is.  And I'm saying knowing full well that no one with a substantial twitter following greater than Sn00ki shall ever read these words. 

Lesson One:
Snooki isn't just tweeting about shows she is going to be on. She also tweets about her everyday life, which is obviously more interesting than yours.

Lesson Two:

She tweets about her poof half the time. It's so firmly entrenched in her character that it has a frickin' life of its own. If Snooki's poof had written a book and it came down to you and the poof...believe me...the agent would take that poof and you'd get the rejection letter.

Lesson Three:
Do you note the carefully disguised transition used in this tweet from talking about Lady Gaga whom the whole world is interested in to nudging you to watch her on the red carpet?  It's so clever and funny, I'm beside myself that I could see through this.

Lesson Four:
She shows love to her Followers. "Tweedos"? Dr. Michio Kaku might ask.  I would have to stammer out an answer to the Carl Sagan of our generation.  It would go something like this, "No sir, it is not a quantum particle. It is an affectionate nickname and has more power than you babbling about math. No one cares about science sir." So come up with a nickname..."muffycakes" isn't taken. Neither is "tweekins".

Lesson Five:


She makes shout outs to her pals and compliments them. I've been on twitter for a few weeks now and have never gotten a shout out from my closest e-buddies on TWITTER, Steph Schmidt, Rogue Mutt, and Misha.  And not once has any of them complimented my firm, ample breasts! I'm so mortified.

So yeah...do I do any of these things? Nope. Hence my following of like...80. But I know the way, and I point it out for you so that you too can tweedazzle my foshizzle. Oh and in case you thought you were tweeting correctly, I offer up that the Bronx Zoo cobra got 75,000 followers in two days on its twitter and it doesn't even have arms, legs, or fingers to tweet with. My suggestion...set up twitter accounts for your make believe characters (the more outrageous...the better). Just look at the Dos Equis man.  His tweets include such wisdom as "He swam the Arctic Circle. He did the backstroke so he wouldn't get his cigar wet." Mutt, you seriously should tweet as the Scarlett Knight...I'm tellin' ya.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Me Me Me Me ~ Twitter Part One

Does Twitter breed narcissism? Do your eyes light up when you see a new blog comment, receive a new email, a new tweet, or a Facebook message? Some writers refer to this as validation. I say that's a euphemism for narcissistic personality disorder or NPD.

Think about why you follow people on Twitter. You want to know all about them, their lives, their thoughts...you want to know if they're going to lunch in a bookstore or if they'll post a photo of something you have never seen and get that intimate experience that only 900,000 other people can share at the same time. But it was meant for you lovelies...it was meant for you.

After categorizing 3,000 messages from 350 Twitter users in a recent study, professors at Rutgers University published a study that indicated the majority of updates on twitter are self-centered.  From the press release:
80 percent of regular users are "meformers," people who use the platform to post updates on their everyday activities, social lives, feelings, thoughts, and emotions. The remaining 20 percent--"informers"--share information, have larger social networks, and are more interactive with their followers.
Here's an article that goes more in-depth on the prevalence of Narcissistic Personality Disorder in the social media scene.
If you go to a big city tweetup or social media conference, you're almost guaranteed to meet a clique of NPD people and their minions engaged in an ego-stroking circle jerk.... The successful NPD person creates an intricate matrix of positive feedback in the form of fans, friends, followers, and partners who fulfill their endless needs. When the sources of these ego rewards (comments, accolades, retweets, speaking gigs) become unavailable or fail, the narcissist will experience intense feelings of emptiness.
Don't get me wrong. I'm not advocating against using Twitter. On the contrary, I'm on Twitter and because of it, I knew breaking news the moment it happened. 1) Adam Lambert got kicked out of Lady Gaga's birthday party for trying to shove her face into her cake--I mean...damn!! 2) Bill Shatner is in New Zealand but failed to provide me a tweet of when he went to the bathroom 3) A famous YA author loves Tumblr 4) and another famous author compares herself to the powder puff girls and...wait for it...proclaims her frustrations on twitter that her bank put a limit on her debit card on how much she could spend in a day despite the fact that she has the money to cover it. 

I'm so inspired...Do you think that I could put the above design on a t-shirt? Everyone I know would have to have one. Of course, I'd expect you to buy it from me and wear it for me and tell me how much you love it and tweet me and message me and comment me...

Oh dear...

Monday, April 11, 2011

Outer Space Stuff

I follow this dude on twitter. His name is Douglas Wheelock and he's an astronaut presently aboard the international space station. Here he is in his spacesuit. Anyway, he published a bunch of nice pictures on twitter (astro_wheels) and my dad sent me an email letting me know about them. So, I figured I'd make my Monday post about pictures from space. Interesting tidbit==> I guess that the International Space Station has only had internet access for about half a year now.  I used his comments as the captions on the photographs so you know a little about what you're looking at since the Earth looks way different from outer space.

Greek Islands on a clear night during a flight over Europe. Athens shines
brightly along the Mediterranean Sea.

This is Mystery Island near Madagascar.

Northern Lights in the distance in one of the finest nights over Europe. You can
see the Strait of Dover, a dazzling Paris, and a little fog over the western part
of England, particularly over London.

Of all the places of our beautiful planet, few can rival the beauty and richness of
the Bahamas. In this photo you can see his ship against the background of all
the color.


This is some peak in the Andes Mountains in South America. He didn't know
which peak it was.

This is a beautiful Atoll in the Pacific Ocean approximately 1930 km south of
Honolulu.
This is a night view of the River Nile, stretching like a snake through Egypt to the
Mediterranean Sea and Cairo located in the delta.
Other cool facts: They travel at a speed of 28,163 kilometers per hour in the International Space Station (around 8 kilometers per second). This means that they make one revolution of the Earth every 90 minutes and watch sunsets and sunrises every 45 minutes.  This is a fancy way of saying that fully half of the journey spent on the ISS is spent in darkness.

Also on another interesting note on March 28th, scientists observed the largest explosion in the universe.  Here's the link to the article.  In short, a huge star was witnessed being pulled apart by a black hole that resulted in an incredible light show visible billions of light years away.

Illustration of star being torn apart by black hole.
I guess this explosion was much larger than a gamma ray burst. I can't wait 'til Dr. Michio Kaku does a television special on this.