Kicking for a Start

October 2, 2016

Kickstarter has some awesome stuff going on. I hate how typically, I miss the boat with a lot of these campaigns, and don’t find out about them until shortly after they close. Fortunately, they mostly seem to make their main goal, oftentimes many times over. Still, it’s frustrating when I find out about something really kick-ass the day after funding stops.

The other day, I found out about Hath No Fury. You really should check out the page, it sounds awesome! Whether the pick my story or not, I’m excited for the anthology. I’m a man, yes, but I’ll gladly read anything that kicks ass, or characters that do so.

I think that’s the thing about this. It isn’t just about women protagonists (not unheard of, believe it or not), but women that kick ass and do cool things. I’ve long been a fan of Samus Aran, Ellen Ripley, and many of the Disney heroines (yeah, I like Disney movies. What of it?), plus many, many more. Hell, one of my favorite comic books ever was Gotham City Sirens (sigh…too short-lived. Where else could you get Catwoman, Poison Ivy, Harley Quinn, and my absolute favorite, The Riddler, all in one place?!).

I didn’t find out about Hath No Fury until after funding ended, but I’ll be sure to buy a copy, and you should too. Currently, I’m looking into other Kickstarter campaigns so I can support the hard-working people who make these things possible.

For me, it isn’t about bonuses and as much free shit as I can carry. It’s about supporting a dream. A vision. An idea that otherwise, probably wouldn’t get made. Seriously, a friend of mine told me that with books, movies, TV shows, etc., only about 1% of anything gets “professionally” made, produced, published, whatever. The other 99% either goes in the dustbin, or you make it yourself.

Getting into self-publishing, it’s easy to understand how some people just can’t let something die. While getting a paycheck is always nice, it isn’t just about the money. Well, some campaigns quite obviously are, but not usually. It’s about seeing your dream come true, your goals come into fruition. What’s so bad about that?

Unfortunately, a lot of these Kickstarters, Indiegogos, Gofundmes, etc. all have too many backer rewards. It’s like, Hey I won’t give you money unless you give  me stuff.

I have a confession. I donate to charities. Yep, I give money, anonymously, to organizations that use it to make a difference in this world. I expect nothing in return, except the satisfaction of knowing I’ve helped. Any time I see an awesome crowdfunding campaign, I wonder if my money would be better used with a charity that desperately needs it.

Sometimes I do it, other times I’ll do the crowdfunding. I understand the need for it, though, and might even do something myself some day. I hope you’ll all contribute, and support not just me, but all the other hardworking and deserving folks who will have contributed their stories (of course it’ll be an anthology! I’ve had an idea for quite some time).

In the meantime, go support the arts! Whether it’s through Kickstarter, or any of those others crowdfunding pages, or something else—a local art show, a used or independent bookstore, comic book stores, going to see a band play, donate a few bucks to a museum, or just spreading the word of fantastic artists of all sorts, we all thank you…and do the same for others, as well.

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7th Sea is back!

February 4, 2016

A few months ago, I saw some very good news.

7th Sea is returning!!!!

One of the biggest inspirations to my writing, 7th Sea was a role-playing game by Alderac Entertainment Group, or AEG. It also had a collectible card game that I was pretty big into.

Imagine an alternate 17th century Europe, with magic. Now imagine a lot of pirate stuff, intrigue, and well-developed characters. There’s so much more to it, but that’s the gist.

The game died a slow, quiet death. I was bummed, but hadn’t played rpg’s in a long time. Still, I read those books all the time for inspiration and ideas, even to this day. So imagine my elation when I saw that the game is coming back!

John Wick, the original writer/developer of the game (not the Keanu Reeves character), has bought the rights to it from AEG. It should be premiering at GenCon this year, so I might actually go for the first time in 11 years.

Like many things, it’ll go through Kickstarter. February 9th is the day, so please, go pledge. Not only are you helping many talented writers and artists bring their work to life, you are helping so many gamers and interested minds in experiencing one of the greatest games ever.

Who knows, maybe they’ve got room for some new writers…

Whatever happens, I’m happy. More reading material, and a new game for a new generation. What a great time to be alive.

Good News!/Bad News

November 2, 2015

I feel that I’m getting into a bad habit of only writing blogs when something good has happened, or when I’m really pissed off about something. It’s okay, though. What use is a blog if not as a sounding board?

Well, today I’m pissed, but happy at the same time. I’ll start with the good news.

As you’ve read before, last year just before Christmas I had a story accepted by Black Denim Lit. It was slow going hearing anything at all from them. Moving into October, I was getting pretty worried. I emailed and asked what was up but this is just their schedule, so I’ll have my story published very soon. I’m happy about that! It’s hard to wait sometimes, but that’s life. I need to be more patient.

With some publications, I try very hard to be patient. Unfortunately, it doesn’t always work.

I’ve had to email several lately, just asking what’s the status of my submission. Some get back to me…others don’t. It worries me, because they could be closing their doors for good and not letting anyone know. That is a very typical thing, and while irritating that they don’t even post a message on their website or Facebook page, I can understand. Life happens, and you don’t always have the luxury of crossing all your t’s and dotting all your i’s.

Some, however, are able to.

Crossed Genres Magazine…a kickass concept if there ever was one. Each month, the magazine has a different theme. Naturally, the theme is two or more genres mashed up, or an idea that you wouldn’t normally think of, whatever. Cowboys fighting Lovecraftian monsters, for instance. Caveman romance, disco firemen, I don’t know. There’s a ton of things that could work, and chances are, you’ve got an interesting story like this already written. I had a bunch, and would submit to them any time I could.

They never accepted me, though.

A few months ago, I knew I had a shot. Starting November 1st (hey, that’s today!), they would open submissions for the Sword and Sorcery issue. Hey, that’s not a zany crossed genre! But of course, you make it that way.

A story I’m currently submitting (and failing with miserably) fits the bill perfectly. I knew I had a shot, and I knew that everything would work out awesome.

I just checked their website. They’re closed.

Closed for good, as of November 1st (hey that’s today!). Grr!

They have an announcement about it, though. It makes sense. I can’t be mad, and i’m not. Not only are the editors having personal issues (a typical reason for shutting down), the magazine wasn’t doing so hot moneywise.

That gets the biggest sigh of all from me. No one wants to donate money or pay for anything, but when it affects them, all of a sudden they’re begging everyone for a handout. I admit, I can be pretty stingy myself. Hey, I’ve got bills and after my necessities are paid off, I’m left with a very small pittance. I can’t just go and support everyone that needs it. But what gets to me more than anything is the priority that a lot (not all, but a lot) of internet donaters have.

Some crowdfunding sites have some great stuff. Help fund my college? Help pay my medical bills so I don’t die of cancer? Eh, pass. But the ridiculous stuff? I want a pizza! Funded for $4,254. I want new panties for more slutty Instagram pics! Funded for $7,931,395. Really, people?!

“But Myke,” you complain, “donating to an online publication won’t do anything for me! Where’s my freebie?”

True, sites like Kickstarter often have perks where if you donate, you get something unique and kickass for doing so. But know what you get for donating to an online magazine that posts stories for free? Access to more quality writing. More stories that will keep you entertained, and help you escape from your shitty life for just that much longer. Plus, you’re helping countless others.

The publication, the editors, and the hardworking writers who get paid dick for spending so many hours of blood, sweat, toil and tears hoping to get their story perfected and entertain you.

You.

We’re working hard for YOU. So why not be a pal? Donate. Help out. Show your appreciation. You’ll be glad you did.

And so will we. In fact, we’ll keep bringing you great stories for doing so.

Thanks for your support!