a quick update and a cat picture

Hey there! I’m taking care of some last-minute edits on the current work in progress, so that I can submit it to a contest on Monday. The task is requiring the majority of the mental energy I have at my disposal, so blogging isn’t too high on the priority list this week.

The edit is going pretty well. I haven’t found many mistakes. I’ve fixed some style issues, redundancies and the like. If I had my way, I’d keep it for a few more weeks, but I don’t have more weeks, and hence, I move forward with what I have.

I’ll probably be around more next week. Until then, please enjoy this picture of Max in which his feet look tiny. He is a very serious man. The picture is a little dark because I have to photograph him without the flash or he closes his eyes.

Moo baby

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movie: The Raven

My son is being hilarious tonight. He’s 9 and pretty much a relentless fountain of conversation. He said the following to me with no lead-in.

“The Chinese people were right about me. I was born near the sheep.”

He went on to explain that people at the museum he recently went to told him about Chinese horoscopes, then it made more sense.

Ok, movie! This one is going to be quick because I have a lot to do and not enough time in which to do it.

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The Raven

Description from IMDB: “When a madman begins committing horrific murders inspired by Edgar Allan Poe’s works, a young Baltimore detective joins forces with Poe to stop him from making his stories a reality.”

This is a movie after my own heart. I LOVE Poe. He is one of those characters from history that I would love to meet. Genius and crazy.

The Raven has a vibe similar to that of the Christina Ricci Sleepy Hollow movie from a while back. It’s equally dreary and creepy. John Cusack is great as Poe, but I don’t think he was quite as eccentric as the real Poe would have been.

Gore is present but not excessive. The story certainly doesn’t rely on it. References to Poe’s stories are fun to pick out. Overall, it’s an intelligent movie that’s fun to watch. The Raven gets an A.

movie: Resident Evil: Retribution

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Is it cold where you are, fair reader? It’s cold as balls here. Yesterday morning, the truck indicated that the external temperature was 3 degrees. 3!! Winter last year was so mellow. Now what’s typical of my neck of the woods makes me feel like someone dropped me into a tub of ice water, like system shock. Brrrrr….

Anyway, movie.

We watched Resident Evil: Retribution on blu ray – my Christmas gift from my babies. I’ve been a fan of the Resident Evil franchise since the very first game.

I actually played through that first game several times. And I’ve played most of the games since, except for those few oddball titles like Outbreak.

I’ve also seen all of the Resident Evil movies (the non-animated ones). I wouldn’t call them cinematic masterpieces, but I like the action. And I love Mila Jovovich as Alice. She makes the Res movies worth watching.

Here’s the IMDB description for Retribution: “Alice fights alongside a resistance movement in the continuing battle against the Umbrella Corporation and the undead.”

There are good things about this movie and bad. First, could that girl who plays Jill Valentine please take an acting class or something? I hate to be so harsh, but I cringe every time she delivers a line that sounds like she’s reading it out loud for the first time.

She looks the part perfectly. Other than that fact, I don’t understand how she got the role. For her to be acting alongside Jovovich seems wrong somehow. Jill is a major character, the original Resident Evil protagonist. Erg.

I was happy to see Michelle Rodriguez back in this one. She fits into the Resident Evil world really well.
Retribution is on par with the previous movies. This one picks up pretty much exactly where the last one left off. The environment in this one is different. It takes place in an underground facility (like the first one did) but in this facility are huge reproductions of sections of major cities. There’s just as much action, gun-slinging, butt-kicking, general maiming of zombies and humans alike.

Bottom line: This verse is same as the first, which is a-ok with me because I dig it.

Resident Evil: Retribution gets an A-

2012: the writing rundown

I have pushed out the movie post to later this week because today is the last day of 2012. I need to do my year in review.

Let’s see. First, I can’t believe the year is up. They go so fast, don’t they?

We all survived the Mayan Apocalypse, mostly because it didn’t happen. Yeah, baby!

In writing news, I released 2 books. Lair of the White Wyrm and Devil in the Branch. Those were fun times.
I wrote a shortish story, a novella, and the longest book I’ve written yet, not in that order. Total new material word count for the year, not counting blogs – 124872.

Not bad for a part timer. Hopefully I’ll be able to take this gig full time somewhere in the near future. I could probably do at least double that if I could keep myself focused.

I also finally participated in Nanowrimo. I didn’t make the 50,000 word “winner” level but I did finish the rough draft of the thing I was working on within the month. That would be the novella.

I did slightly better with requesting reviews for my books. That’s been an issue for me in the past. I also learned that only about 20% of the people who offer to review books actually end up reviewing them. I have no bitterness about that because I only offer ebook copies.

And now I’m quite glad I did that. I couldn’t imagine going through the trouble and cost of shipping off print copies of books and encountering that issue. Then I would be a tad annoyed.

I figured out how to add books and do giveaways on Goodreads. That was like a mystery to me for a long time for some odd reason. There was some kind of mental block.

Last but not least, What the Dead Fear was recently used as classroom material in an English as a second language class in Thailand. WOO! How awesome is that? It’s pretty awesome, I’d say.

Well, that’s it, I guess. Happy New Year, everybody!