Morning Cuppa – 03/21/13 – Hemingway! Websites matter! Charles Stross on self publishing!

I have a crippling case of con-envy this morning as my boy-o’s are off swan-diving into the sweaty pool of geekery that is Pax East. Don’t shed a tear for me though, I’m fine, REALLY I’M FINE!

  • Have you ever had the dream to get an opportunity to work in another writer’s space? If you’re willing to commit to a year-long stint in a suburban Chicago attic, then you just might be able to work in a home that Hemingway lived in. Until he was five at least. But hey, HISTORY!!!
  • Do you still need a website? Is it even an important part of an author’s platform anymore? You bet your boots, and especially if you’re an author of scifi, fantasy or horror, a website and rss feeds are a piece of the open web for which the paragons of our collective genres advocated. Jeremiah Tolbert explains more.
  • Charles Stross explains in a blog post today why he chooses not to self publish. When it comes right down to it, he doesn’t want to do the sales, marketing, not to mention copy editing, etc that goes into getting a book out. And it would be a huge time-suck even if he did know every part of the process. He’d rather just stick to the writing.
    Fair enough, though as a (currently) unpublished author, sometimes I wonder if that same freedom exists. If I never manage to get a contract, or if I decide that the payoffs for going with a publisher are too minimal, then I’ll be stuck doing these tasks myself. It’s neither here nor there, after all he was just relating why he doesn’t self publish but it does give you something to consider.

As I mentioned, my compadres from the podcast that I’m in, Unqualified Geeks, are at Pax East all weekend. Follow them on Twitter for more coverage.

Morning Cuppa – 03/18/13 – UnGeeks episode 5! Kickstarter! Free book!

It’s Monday and you’re boo-hoo-ing in your Cheerio’s about it and possibly vurping up corned beef and cabbage. Take a gander at what I’ve got on tap today to get that spring back in your step…

  • There’s a new episode of the podcast I do every week(-ish) up, Unqualified Geeks. This week we have guest ungeek and Omar’s brother, Jared joining the fun. We talk about Kickstarter, Veronica Mars, graphene-based super batteries, and more!
  • The Kickstarter discussion came about because of my frustration with people who start them without considering the end date but then the Veronica Mars kickstarter created a bit of a stir. The biggest question seemed to be, why do we need to kickstart something that a major corporation will profit from? Chuck Wendig responds on his blog about this today.
  • Whatever your opinion is of Dan Brown and his specific brand of thriller, I find it interesting that Doubleday is giving away free copies of The Da Vinci Code as a promo for his upcoming release, The Inferno. While the promotion is live, from the 17th-24th, you can find out how to download the free copy from Dan Brown’s website.

Morning Cuppa – 02/25/13 – Unqualified Geeks! Game of Thrones trailer! Do you blog?

It’s Monday and you’ve got your Oscar hangover on, the cheap cologne stink of Seth MacFarlane jokes is still all over you. Welcome to your morning cuppa.

For the month of February if you comment on one of my blog posts with the title of your book, I’ll buy it and review it here.

Introducing my new project, the Unqualified Geeks podcast!

Shameless plug alert! I’ve been hinting at this in some posts over the last few weeks but I’m happy to announce a new project that I’ve been working on with a couple of good friends. We’ve started a new podcast called Unqualified Geeks where we talk about all sorts of geeky stuff, some of it timely, some not so much.UG-basic-itunes-logo

So, why “unqualified?” Because we feel there’s a thread within our culture but especially in geek culture that only values “expert” opinion on any subject. While being knowledgable and sharing your specific expertise with others can be fun, using that same information to lord over other people is not fun, and is dickish behavior. We subscribe to Wheaton’s Law in this matter (ie, don’t be a dick). So to that extent, we don’t feel like we’re an authority on any of the subjects we talk about. And yet we still love geek culture and felt passionate enough about it to start our own podcast.

So far we’ve stuck to a discussion format but as we go along and especially as our equipment improves, we’d like to start doing some interviews. Please check us out over at, find us in the iTunes store and on Twitter and Facebook. The website is still a work in progress, so bear with us!

Morning Cuppa – 02/03/13 – Steal Trent Reznors! Bloody new albums! Gaiman advice!

A few brief link shares for you this morning, a couple of a musical bend. Today we record our first official episode of the podcast, more on that hopefully later this week.

  • After frustrations with the pricing of his album in Australia, Trent Reznor tells the crowd at one of his shows to, “steal, steal and steal some more.” 
  • My Bloody Valentine released their first studio album in 20 some years called m b v.
  • Random House has released a book discovery engine, called Bookscout, as an app in Facebook. The interface is a little clunky but it’s interesting to note that they don’t limit recommendations to their own collection.
  • As his long-time friend Clive Barker is going through a bout of ill health, Neil Gaiman shares some great advice he received from him at World Fantasy in London back in 1988.