CyPhaCon Schedule Update!

As packing and final preparation are underway for CyphaCon, an invitation was received for another panel. As it stands now my panel schedule is as follows:

Friday
7 pm – Writing Science Fiction with Real Science
8 pm – Genres: Do They Still Matter?

Saturday
3 p.m. – Creating Memorable Characters
8 pm – Vampires, Zombies, Elder Gods, and things that go bump in the night

Sunday
2 p.m. – Tropes: Good, Bad or Ugly?

Looking forward to seeing as many of you as can make it!

Thank you for reading,

Ernest

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Coast Con 42

No automatic alt text available.ATTENTION! GUEST ANNOUNCEMENT INCOMING! We are happy to welcome Ernest Russell as an Author Guest for CoastCon 42!

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This convention has been a part of my geek life for over 30 years, it is very exciting to be going this year as a guest. It has been a delight working with the staff at this convention. Looks like I will be scheduled for at least 5 panels, more on those as they firm up topics.

I’ll be sharing a vendor table with a dear friend and fellow author, Marie Beau. By the time of the convention, March 8 – March 10 2019, we should both have new books available.

Updates regarding the event and schedules will be posted here as they develop.

Thank you for reading,

Ernest

An update on the Three Billy Goats Gruff

I know, I know, I promised the story. Well, the bad news is I will not be sharing the rest of this crime noir here.

The good news is a publisher reached out and we are discussing a book based on this story. I am putting finishing touches on the proposal today.

The Billy Goats Gruff – A Crime Noir Fairy Tale – Part 1

The end of a creative group

Thank you for reading,

Ernest

The end of a creative group

Sadly a project in which my partnered artist and I had completed our work has been cancelled. Once Upon a Mystery… is no more. Apparently a lack of communication more than anything else among the principals. This was suppose to be a fun and simple project, a crime noir fairy tale that was PG-13.

For my part, I could not have asked for a better partner on the project than Andrew Spalding. He is very talented and creative as an artist and a collaborator. I feel we worked well together and if I ever have the opportunity to work with him in the future would jump at the chance.

Over the next week or so I will release the story here and I will reach out to Andrew regarding placing at least one of his images for it at the end.

Thank you for reading,

Ernest

Shaking my head, for the last week I spent almost sixty hours at work collating data and creating timelines on thirteen accounts for one of the investors.
A tedious process at best because the information is scattered through different siloed systems and can cover 10 years.
This week I volunteered for a project with my publisher. No regrets to it, it has been very educational. No, I obviously did not learn that lesson in army about volunteering.
I have a single source and the project is to restructure the format of the data. I was to spend meager amounts of time in the evenings reading through the material. This allowed me to decide on a format easiest to read, manipulate and share. All I have had to do today is type.
It’s almost finished but the realization struck as I was reviewing it before moving to the next section.
It’s rewriting friggin’ timelines.

 

Thank you for reading,

Ernest

Never enough spoons…

Packing the apartment is further along. We have two moving companies scheduled for Friday to come out and provide estimates.

Managed to run errands yesterday and this evening. After success in a back to school drive, our management team at the corporate gig gave us two hours off. It was definitely needed. The rest of the week I should be able to come straight home and buckle down.

The extra time was spent conveying books culled from my partners work library to the Half-Price Books mothership. My will power is supreme, for I actually managed to leave without the acquisition of more reading material. Sorely tempted by a Cthulhu coloring book, really.

My partner is away right now, it was a conversation with her which led to tonight’s poem. It will be September before we see each other for any length of time again. Plenty to keep me busy and out of trouble. (as if!)

The phrase kept running around in my head after our conversation:

“How gems of a moment can bring perspective to the kaleidoscope of events which form the picture of our lives.”

so a poem had to be written. A realization today may spur another poem, or may a bit of flash.

“Conference rooms are the office chair equivalent of the elephants graveyard.” Not sure what will happen to it but should be fun.

Tonight I worked on the next story for Captain Hazzard, adding about 500 words. A small volume, for which I am happy considering the time spent. This story is going to require more research. Some time this evening was well spent reviewing effects of high frequency sonic waves on the human body and how to counteract harmonic frequencies. Glad I have decent math skills. Everything about the story is set fairly well in mind, except the villain. Really have not solidified the villain yet though I’m certain that will come.

And somewhere in all this I have a book to read for a newsletter.  I will be writing a monthly spotlight column. I do not have enough details to share more than that, but stay tuned. I promise to let you know where to find it.

And this is the point I should truly cease my rambling and bid you a good night.

Thank you for reading,

Ernest

 

Take the good with the sad.

Got a little sad news last night. The art book project for I wrote 14 or so flash pieces has been canceled. The publisher ended up returning the project to the artist.

On the flip side, the next few Flash Fridays are set. 🙂 No, not just those for the next 14 weeks there will be other content as well. The pieces are travel inducements based on the artwork. I believe many of them can serve as platforms for stories. As they get posted if you one would particularly like to see developed leave a comment. Thanks.

Research is progressing apace for the next pulp adventure book. Really had a lot of fun with the character and do not want to lose the momentum.

It is now official. I have told the corporate gig I am resigning. That is indeed both good and sad. I had really begun to enjoy the corporate gig again and the group with whom I currently work. I will miss several of them.

So I have no idea what I will find yet, there appears to be plenty of work available in the area. My partner and I discussed what sort of housing we should seek during a walk this evening.

Just because I had a blat writing them, I will post one of the pieces tonight.

Without further ado, I bid you goodnight.

Thank you for reading,

Ernest

 

Nope, still here. Not getting rid of me that easily. :)

The last month and a half have been roller coasters. If anyone out there still follows this page, thanks for your patience.

The time has been productive. Turned in about ten flash pieces for about 5000 words total. I have reached out to see if more are needed for that particular project.

Really exciting to me is turning in my first book. A short one, not quite 34,000 words but it is submitted and has the potential to become a series of high adventure pulp novels. I’m really excited about it. Two Beta readers have given it a solid thumbs up. Looking forward to hearing back from the publisher. From previous discussion, should be published May/June 2018.

The next story in the series is already kicking around and I have begun some preliminary research. The last story involved the Philosophers Stone, the next will feature the art of telegeodynamics. A theory patented by Nikola Tesla. Appropriately 1930s pulpish mad science. More as it develops.

It is really weird right now just being able to see. I underwent eye surgery for cataracts and my vision is finally stabilizing. I have worn glasses since I was in second grade. Not wearing them now is a constant amazement. Took about two weeks after the second surgery before I realized one of the odd things were perceptually strange. There was no longer a dark rim around everything I viewed. No longer did I view the world through lenses set in dark frames.

One of the best moments in Post op visit after the second surgery. My partner is in the room with me and the ophthalmologist kind of winks at me then proceeds to say, “You really need to stay within the weight and movement restrictions I outlined or your eyeballs may explode.”

We both looked at my partner and she was giving a great impression of The Scream, or McCauley Culkin – Home Alone poster, which is still open for debate. The ophthalmologist went on the explain they wouldn’t really explode but I could develop a type of hemorrhage which could cause blindness. In that moment though I really appreciated the humor.

Our move to Baton Rouge has moved up. Now scheduled for September 8th. So the job hunt will begin in earnest now. I have begun looking at some work from home jobs. Flex jobs and Amazon Mechanical Turk. I have not splurged for the subscription to Flex jobs yet. AMT well, you start small and do not “qualify” for higher paying jobs until you have completed  a quantity. So far easy, spend a little time each day now in hopes by the time of the move can qualify for the $5-$10+ jobs.

That’s really all the news fit to print as they say. Until next time.

Thank you for reading,

Ernest

Tap-Tap-Tap..is this thing still on?

I know posting has slowed a lot and while that is bad, it is also good.

So busy, I have now completed half of my assigned flash. These planet travelogues are so much fun to write. If only pesky things like LIFE, sleep and oh, yeah, work did not intrude on the fun. I am going to ask my publisher if there is anyway I can arrange to use some of these as a base for writing short stories or novels. I do not know how that arrangement will work but am getting some great ideas.

Speaking of novels, I am close to the halfway point.  Making deadline is going to be close. But I knew that, the first eye surgery put me off more than I expected.

There was a little excitement on the trip so far. While the plane is being looked over and repairs are being made, if needed, the rest of the characters are enjoying a sumptuous dinner at the Savoy.

Well, except the one working on the plane. “sigh” Oh! and the other one who has met someone. Even now they are enjoying a walk and serious conversation about the future along the banks of the Thames. Such a lovely, peaceful evening….

Thanks for reading!

Ernest

Decrepit Snake Pliskin

So, it has been three days since my first eye surgery. Since there is a significant difference in vision between the eye which has been operated on and the one with the remaining cataract, I am wearing a patch over the eye with the cataract.

With my black leather trench I have the appearance of a decrepit Snake Pliskin, greying hair, paunch, playing with a knife. There’s a Cosplay in there somewhere. Granpa Pliskin. Though I have much more respect for any action hero with an eye patch. The disorientation of no depth perception is aggravating. The grueling hours of practice to overcome the vertigo and adjusting for the lack of stereo vision would have taken extreme focus. Makes me very glad I only have until the 13th before the next surgery.

A walk to the store and back left me with a bit of vertigo. I have dropped three bottles because though I felt them on the table but missed having them far enough back from the edge by a quarter inch. And yet, the clarity of vision I am experiencing is one I cannot recall. My doctor says it will be four to six weeks before the eye is fully healed, same for the next. Every day my vision improves. I look across the room and books which were barely in focus are now clearly legible.

I have been in glasses since I was in second grade. I have no real recollection of sight without glasses. And over 45 years, because I have always had almost no vision beyond the end of my nose, it has become natural for me to hold some things very close and look over my glasses. Now, if it is less than 12 inches it is still rather blurry. Total opposite of what I have known all my life. This morning I can see my phone if at full arm extension. I tried to write yesterday and set at 200% could see the page, but a couple hundred words in I began developing a splitting headache. Guessing I am beyond that since I am over that word count now.

One last thing to say here which I need to say, I say it last not because it is the least, it is the most important.

None of this, there is so little in my life at this time that I would, oe could be doing without my incredible partner. There have been many who encouraged me to write, but she is my day to day support. Following up, gives me editing advice, tells me when and where something needs to be re-written. And it is she who has given me this gift of vision. This is one of those times the words “Thank you” just feel entirely inadequate.