about me · Audible · Author · Emergence Collective · voice acting

Audible update: The sound of silence.

So the inevitable conversation happened. the short of it was despite not having a deadline, I do indeed want progress, and if this is not the right timing to dedicate and commit to it, I don’t want to be kept hanging on to the next empty promise of recordings to come. I do have projects in the future that he (the voice actor) can do, especially once I work out the kinks and figure out how to actually do this Audible thing. I can pass on the knowledge to him, and he can benefit from my experiences, making him better before he even starts. ( I am an eternal optimist btw).

So now its up to me. Im going to have to get used to hearing my recorded voice, but I got to take one for the team, right? I do have a short story collection I am working on in the sidelines and I think that will be much more digestible for him to take on in the future anyway. The speed that I write, he will have plenty of time to narrate the stories as I write them. 😉

What’s next? Well, I will pick up the recording equipment when I see him on Friday (D&D night), and hoping that won’t be awkward at all. then I will set up and give it a go Saturday or Sunday morning. As soon as I do get the chapter recorded, I shall post it here for you all to scrutinize and critique my performance! Thanks for reading!

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Audible · Author · Emergence Collective · voice acting

Audible update: the saga

Tomorrow, tomorrow, tomorrow, creeps in its petty pace from day to day…. Ok, So I’m not Shakespeare, but Macbeth had it right. In my case, it’s “Monday, Monday, Monday.” If you’ve been following along, I have been waiting on my narrator to (actually) narrate “Emergence Collective” for Audible. This project started about 2 months ago (or earlier, but I was waiting for the recording equipment to arrive.) Despite the enthusiasm of the voice actor, getting his break into the industry, I literally have zero seconds recorded. And me, well, I guess I am just a softy. I haven’t had the heart to fire him yet, He has had some life issues that popped up, illness in the family, and we just got some rain (Thank your chosen deity) that has quelled the forest-fire smoke (which is a pretty legitimate reason).

Monday hath come and gone. Monday is/was his chosen “Day to record.” I say was because now it’s Friday, or so is his promise to get “a Full knuckle down recording session.” I sincerely do hope that it is. I am torn between impatience and empathy since this project isn’t really important in the scheme of things. The world isn’t going to change one way or another if this gets recorded or not. I didn’t say so much in words that this is his last chance at it. but I hope he got the message from my frustration.

Emergence collective will get recorded one way or another. I can’t wait to share some audio with you all. Thanks for stopping by!

about me · Author · Emergence Ascended · Emergence Collective · writing

Quantum Mechanics… If you’re not confused by it, you don’t understand it.

A deep goal of theoretical physics is to unify the fundamental forces of nature, gravity, electromagnetism, and the strong and weak nuclear forces into the theory of everything (TOE).

The Theory of Everything, namely M-theory, string theory, and quantum field theory (and interactions with geometry and topology) is a tasty cosmic stew that to me are topics that are too tempting to not be used as a backbone or structure in the subtext of my story.  String theory specifically has been calling my name for a number of years now, and despite the controversial nature of the theory I am on “Team String”. Lucky for me I don’t have to back anything up that is to say with a “Ph.D.” or citations to peer-reviewed articles, because, hey I write Fiction! One of the issues I have with science fiction (more to the point the uber-nerd readers) is a suspension of disbelief gets lost in the mire of “I know more than the author of the story I am picking apart” (Come on I am not writing a dissertation, just a fun story, just go with it). That little thing has cautioned me to do my research, lest I get flamed somewhere on the internet. But it also gets in the way of artistic license…. Anyway, where was I? Oh, yeah String theory.  Essentially it is the idea of vibrational frequencies (the strings) that make up all matter and energy in the universe. Man, that is good stuff. How could one not use that in a science fiction book? It’s the ultimate tool to describe why the magic in my stories has a connection to reality.

I know that this may not entice anyone to read my next book, but hopefully, if you read “Emergence Collective” with this in the back of your mind it might make it a little more interesting. (and not to mention prepare you for the next one) I have written in previous blog posts that I create a rule set for each story, that helps maintain the continuity, of a concept or even the behavior of the characters. The theory of everything, M theory, quantum field theory, and String theory is my basic rule sets for my WIP. Don’t worry, you really do not have to understand any of it to enjoy my stories which are pure and utter fantasy. If you are the uber-nerd, I will go toe to toe about why my rule sets do or don’t work. I would enjoy that conversation.

Audible · Author · Emergence Ascended · Emergence Collective · writing

Stumbling off the starting line

(An audible update)

Audible news… is no new news. As things seemed to go with my projects, there was yet another snag in the recording process. I am trying not to be cynical but to err is human. So last week’s promise of getting anything recorded got railroaded by life. As I mentioned that “Mondays” are for recording as the narrator has the time to do it (theoretically). Anyway, we will see if there is any progress after today. I suspect that the delays have a lot to do with nerves and stage fright. Of that, I completely understand. But I am starting to consider getting my equipment and do it myself, even though I hate the sound of my own voice.

On another topic, I did get some writing done on Emergence Ascended, and I am feeling good about it. I spent some time re-evaluating what I have so far, rewrote some things added a dash here and a pinch there of breadcrumbs. I like to sneak in clues to the story that the reader can participate in, trying to figure out some of the underlying storylines. I love the feeling of figuring out part of the mystery before the reveal. it makes me feel smart, and I feel like I am more a part of the story than just a bystander. Probably stems from the old choose your own adventure stories. I am happy with what I have got now and am getting to a scene that I have been looking forward to writing.

I love to hear your thoughts and answer questions, so feel free to leave a comment or just a like! Thanks for reading!

art · Author · Emergence Collective · writing

Deleted scenes

I enjoyed a long weekend; the “labor day” holiday here in the US, it is a holiday for the workman. Because, well, we all deserve a day off, right? I spent a lot of time making stuff with my laser. Honestly trying to build inventory to sell at craft fairs and such.

MC escher
Book box

LOTR

I should have been writing. I am not sure if I am procrastinating or not. I have reached a part in the story that kind of has me stumped. Trying to weave two parts of the storyline together. This happened once before in Emergence collective. I had written a chapter that sort of painted me into a corner plot-wise. The chapter was That Barney, after discovering he had the power to control some aspects of reality, decided to trim some fat from his entourage (He is a military commander, and he had been in Eastern Washington investigating a strange anomaly with a detachment of troops) So he manifested a gun and killed them all. Needless to say, this sent the direction of the story in an awkward place, I had to go into why he did, and deal with the ramifications of that action. Honestly it changed the tone of the story a created plot problems that I could not resolve. Ultimately, I scrapped about 4 thousand words and re wrote it. (You should check it out if you haven’t read it!)

I am in a similar position now, where the story has taken off in a direction that I need to steer back into the direction I had originally intended. (For me the stories write themselves and I feel like a bystander most of the time) So I have been procrastinating, pretending to think about the story issues, but also enjoying a hobby. I love to make stuff. I know, I know, I should be writing.

Audible · Author · Emergence Collective

Audible project update

I as a kid I remember reading Aesop’s fables book. Aesop was a slave storyteller in ancient Greece, and he bestowed stories that taught moral ideas and virtues. I took many of those stories to heart and tried to live those lessons in my daily life (I try). Patience was one of those lessons. One of the hardest to adhere to, but life is about practicing the hard stuff until it’s easy, so I will still try.  There is more that is bundled into it as well. Flexibility, understanding, and selflessness must be satisfied to be patient in my situation at least.

The Audible project is having some speed bumps that we are working out. Some usual Life crap that takes precedence over vanity projects and some technical issues that must be dealt with.  There were some medical things Zack and his family (The narrator) had to get past, but those things are smoothing out, and the technical issues are being brainstormed. The biggest technical hurdle is noise pollution.   I am a stickler for producing the highest quality I can achieve in anything I do. The Audible format has very strict guidelines about the audio quality for the recording as that represents their brand. Of course, they want the highest fidelity.

I bought the best recording equipment I could afford, and ironically enough, that equipment quickly pointed out how noisy his apartment is. The audio samples I heard, although decent, picked up every sound that our human ears has learned to drown out. The motor on the refrigerator, the fan in another room, and cars driving by outside, were accentuated by the microphone. Sadly, the audio is useless for Audible ACX guidelines.

Back to the drawing board, or to my amazon, actually. The solution is to get acoustic panels to soundproof the environment (which for now is more than likely his bathroom. I plan on making some modular panels (portable partitions) that can be set up and removed easily when it’s time to record. So, when you are listening to my book in the bathroom, getting ready for work, just realize that it was also recorded in one! Funny how life can come full circle huh?

More patience, waiting for my Amazon delivery, building the partitions, and then getting the recordings is in my future. Thank you Aesop for your philosophical teachings that I can now put into practice.

Audible · Author · Emergence Collective · spiritualism · writing

Where ever you go, there you are…

I am back from another camping trip. Did ya miss me? I’ve actually been back for awhile. However getting back into technology takes a bit of motivation. Dont get me wrong I am not one of those burn your TV kind of people. I think that whatever you choose to entertain yourself is the right thing to do. To me the concept of wasting time scrolling through Instagram or playing video games, or, watching tv is not a waste of time. And there does not always need to be “value added” or gain some positive benefit from that time “wasted”. After all, isn’t that why we work so hard, provide for family, get all the adulting stuff out of the way, so that we can have some downtime and relax or play. Anyway I’m rambling. My point is, I am not against technology at all, but my brain has a difficulty switching tasks from being in a natural environment to a technological one.

I can find Zen in technology. Stacking the virtual stones to make something beautiful from the chaos of the digital world, but it takes a little intention. Breathe in, breathe out… type some words. Ok.

Tomorrow I should have an update on the Audible project. The narrator is still getting familiar with the process and equipment so I have left him alone (My urge to request constant updates on his progress is an exercise in patience). I hope to have a snippet of Audio to add the blog but we shall see. once I do start to get audio chapters I look forward to sharing!

about me · Author · Emergence Ascended · writing

Being of two minds…

I managed to scratch out another chapter, but I can’t help but feel that I am dragging things out or procrastinating the decisions I need to make. Don’t get me wrong, I really like the last chapter so far. I think it is an important chapter and provides some needed elements for the story progression. This conundrum brings to mind something I read in the book “The man who mistook his wife for a hat” By Oliver Sacks (It’s a great read I suggest you try it). It is about various neurological disorders. One of them was about split-brain disorder where both hemispheres of the brain had been disconnected. The result was that each hemisphere was competing for dominance, Making decision-making impossible. Sort of an immovable object/unstoppable force situation since neither hemisphere was dominant, there was an impasse or stalemate in the decision. Like being stuck in the cereal aisle, there are too many choices to make an overall decision since each individual choice has equal merit and weight. That being said, I have a couple paths to take in the storyline and am having difficulty deciding which one would work better to get me to a satisfying conclusion. Ah, the struggles of an artist Thanks for visiting! If you thought this was interesting, please don’t hesitate to comment!

about me · Author · Emergence Ascended · writing

Choose your own adventure!

Yes, I was a book nerd growing up. One of the most influential books/series was the “Choose your own adventure!” books (Until I discovered H.P. Lovecraft in the 3rd grade). If you are not familiar, each book has multiple story paths and ends depending on how you make choices at key parts of the story. When the characters reach a point where a decision is made, you get a few to choose from, and your choice directs you to a new page that continues that storyline. It’s a great concept, and you can re-read the book for different outcomes. Very economical writing structure.

Now here I am, the master of the story choosing my own adventure to write. Its very exciting, but I am tasked with coming up with the paths and endings for myself. And that is the crux of it. Emergence Ascended has reached the point where I have to make some decisions and some of those decisions just might change the outcome of the story (of which I have already plotted in my head) There are character interactions that I have multiple situations to consider and that is proving to make things difficult to “get it right”. That being said, I have not been writing much on it (well on ‘paper’) but thinking very hard about how I want the rest of the story to progress. At least I am not one to back away from a challenge. Once I break free from this little speedbump, I am sure that the book will finish fast and be something I can be proud of. Thanks for taking the time to visit!

Author · Horror · writing

Itch part two.

Part two. Of course this is flash fiction a rough draft, unedited. I wanted to get the meat of it down, and I’ll file it into the category of “Ill work on it more later.”

He felt as if he was aiming for every pothole and bump in the dirt road. Not slowing for corners, he skidded around each one with literal wild abandon while planning his next move. No one knows yet. I have time to make it home and pack up. Just disappear. But to where? Ditch the company truck; yeah, that’s first on the list. Fresh clothes, oh the bank, take out my saving and lose my credit cards, cash from here on out. Lost in thought, his body on autopilot and coursing with adrenaline, the giant pothole in the middle of the road came quick, and he yanked the steering wheel hard to swerve around it as the front left wheel dipped into the ditch. Yanking hard again on the wheel, he tried to pull out of it but overcorrected and careened off the road catching air as he sailed into the swamp.

                The buzzing woke him. A constant, maddening hum. The dim light of the morning showed through the cracked windshield, sending rainbow patterns over the cab of the truck. The tree that had stopped him and cracked his windshield bowed over, pinning the truck to the swampy ground but saving him from plunging deeper into the swamp.

                Bruno tried to open his eyes. They were sticky with sleep and felt like his eyelids were swelling. He managed to pry them open and looked around, disoriented and confused about where he was. The buzzing again was loud in his ear as a massive mosquito flew through his open window. He wave his fat stubby hand to shoe it away, then noticed a series of large swelling bumps. Another huge mosquito takes the place of the one he shoed away fat with fresh blood, so fat it could barely fly, flew past his face. That’s when he remembered, and his panic began to renew. Shit shit shit! I gotta get out of here! He frantically pushed the door, but the mud had worked its way halfway up the door, and it would take a force of nature to move it. It didn’t even budge. The window then. Changing tactics, he climbed onto his knees and stuck his head out the window, but his keg-sized beer belly only threatened to get him stuck in an awkward position. Winded and out of breath, he sat back. The buzzing got louder, and he began to itch.

A shadow formed outside the truck’s window, like a cloud passing in front of the sun. But this cloud hummed with a disturbing resonance. Several mosquitos flew in and began to buzz in his face. He swats at them, irritated at the intrusion. He slapped a courageous one that had swelled to a startling red as it sucked on his leg. He smashed that one out of existence and then rubbed the sting on his leg. Another landed on his hand, and another. The cloud grew and darkened the outside of his window as the buzzing increased. “Fuck you!” he screamed in frustration as he swatted and slapped frantically. He felt as if he needed more hands, as the sheer number of the mosquito grew exponentially. A new panic took hold as the itch began to grow.

                Everywhere now. Every bit of exposed skin had begun to deform with large bulging bites. His hands, face, neck and even the top of his head were now becoming on continuous maddening itch. His swollen eyelids caused his eyes to blur and water, they itched. He rubbed them with the rough edges of his shirtsleeve, but that did little to relieve it. A sudden wave of convulsion overtook him as the primal part of his brain took over, and he began to rub and swat all over his body fending off the constant and incessant attack. Wave after wave of mosquitos flew in the window and mercilessly took full advantage of a captive dinner as they sucked and sucked.

                He must have passed out again. He woke to a blanket of mosquitos covering his entire body, greedily tapping him dry and the burning itch. Everything itched now. He pried an eye open and searched for something, anything to scratch with. He scrubbed at his body, trying to scratch every inch at once. And he cried out in agony, sending a swarm of mosquitos into the air, only to reposition themselves and begin again.”God damn it! I can’t take it anymore!” He shouted in pain and frustration.

                He saw the glint of metal from an old clipboard he didn’t use anymore; the plastic had cracked, and it was hard to write on. He snatched it up and snapped the board in half, exposing a jagged plastic edge. He started on his hand first. Dragging the edge along the top of his hand, leaving red trails as the skin scrapped away. The relief was short-lived, and he continued to rub the shard of plastic back and forth, getting redder with every pass. But it only made it worse and seemed to intensify everywhere else it itched. He dug in deeper, scraping skin away to the fat and meat below, not even feeling the pain of it, but it was the closest thing to the relief he felt.

                All he could hear was a constant buzz and the sound of his heartbeat. He couldn’t feel his hand anymore Thank god. But now he could stop scratching at his face. So swollen it was impossible to open his eyes he began to work the plastic clipboard on his face. He scraped and tore at the skin on his face. He dragged the slick jagged edge peeling of another layer, moaning in despair and feeling his consciousness slip into darkness.