Tuesday, June 14, 2016

GUEST POST COVER REVEAL: Self-Help 101 or: How to Survive a Bombardment With Minimal Injury by L.G. Keltner

Today I'm helping the lovely L.G. Keltner reveal the cover of her new book,  Self-Help 101 or: How to Survive a Bombardment With Minimal Injury. I just finished her previous book, Self-Help 101 or: How I Learned to Take Over the World Through Tolerating My Family (which she talked about right here back in December) and I enjoyed it quite a bit. It was a lot of fun and I'm really looking forward to this new book.

I also really love her book titles, but anyone who knows my tastes probably could have guessed that.

How to Survive a Bombardment With Minimal Injury is due out in just a couple of weeks, so be sure to mark your calendars to pick it up. Should be a great summer read for a nice laugh at the beach or the cottage. While you're waiting I highly recommend How I Learned to Take Over the World Through Tolerating My Family, or you can check out LG's sci-fi novella A Silent Soliloquy. She's also featured in the Insecure Writer's Support Group Anthology Parallels: Felix Was Here, which I assume all of you have already picked up. (*wink, wink, nudge, nudge*)


Title: Self-Help 101 or: How to Survive a Bombardment With Minimal Injury
Author: L.G. Keltner
Genre: YA/holiday/humor
Length: 25,000 words
Cover Art: L.G. Keltner and Jamon Walker
Release Date: June 28, 2016

Dani Finklemeier has self-published her guide to taking over the world, but she still isn’t rich. Now she’s eighteen, still babysitting for money, and looking forward to starting college in the fall.

Of course, she has to survive a 4 th of July outing with her family first. That’s a challenging prospect considering she has to be in close proximity with a group of cousins known as The Fallible Four. As if that weren’t enough, she also has to deal with the fallout of her parents learning more about her relationship with her boyfriend Seth than she ever wanted them to know.

The good news is that, if she survives this holiday, she’ll have plenty of material for another self-help book.


L.G. Keltner spends most of her time trying to write while also cleaning up after her crazy but wonderful kids and hanging out with her husband.  Her favorite genre of all time is science fiction, and she’s been trying to write novels since the age of six.  Needless to say, those earliest attempts weren’t all that good.

Her non-writing hobbies include astronomy and playing Trivial Pursuit.

You can typically find L.G. lurking around her blog, on Twitter, or on her Facebook page.

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Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Fingers Crossed for June (#IWSG)

The first Wednesday of every month is officially Insecure Writer’s Support Group day. Writers post their thoughts on their blogs, talking about their doubts and the fears they have conquered. It's a chance for writers to commiserate and offer a word of encouragement to each other. Check out the group here.

May was the first time I missed a IWSG post in a year. I would love to say it was because I was busy celebrating my 36th birthday, but actually it was just a shitty week and I didn't feel like writing anything, not even bitching online.

On Monday I had some major computer glitches and lost 2 months worth of work on my current WIP.  Usually I'm pretty obsessive about backing up my work, but for whatever reason I hadn't made a copy (at least off the laptop) since I had started my final round of major edits and revisions. I guess we all need that reminder every now and then to back-up, back-up, back-up.

On Tuesday my wife got into a car accident with our one-year old in the vehicle. Fortunately they were both okay, but the car was messed up pretty badly. The other driver was charged with reckless driving and our insurance covered everything, but it was still a pretty scary couple of hours while I was stuck home with our other kid, unable to do anything while my wife was dealing with the police on the side of the road somewhere. Not to mention the weeks of dealing with the insurance company that has followed.

Oh and did I also mention an absolutely atrocious meeting I had with my boss in there, too? I won't go into the details on that one, but here's a visual copy of the minutes:

The good news is we've mostly recovered from all those hiccups. I've pretty much finished redoing all the work I lost on my WIP, and I think it's even better this time around. We just got the car back and insurance took care of everything. Except for the over $1000 that we're still waiting for them to pay us back for various things, but whatever, we will get it back eventually. And by then it will come as a pleasant surprise. And work has settled back into a reasonable routine without too much weirdness.

So yeah, May started pretty rough but we're past it now and we're looking forward to the summer (and to finally releasing my new book!) It's a new month, a new page and all that. Onwards and upwards! Huzzah!

Now please enjoy this hypnotic GIF for hours...

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Thursday, April 7, 2016

Finally... the Rogue One Trailer drops!


It was 16 years between Return of the Jedi and The Phantom Menace. And ten years between Revenge of the Sith and The Force Awakens. Now, barely 12 months later, we've got another live action Star Wars movie. So what you want about Disney, but they're really pandering to my childhood, and isn't that all we can ask for?

Some initial thoughts:

  • It's got all the original sights and familiar elements that everyone loves from the original trilogy, which would be even more impressive if we hadn't already kind of had that in The Force Awakens. 
  • The cinematography looks beautiful, and WELL-LIT. So many movies these days are de-saturated and shadowy, as the director tries to replace the emotion of good story and acting with eye strain. This movie looks surprisingly bright and colourful, and I am unexpectedly pleased by this. Now please don't convert it to 3-D...
  • I'm getting a definite Hunger Games vibe here, at least from the trailer. For one thing the young woman looks a lot like Katniss Everdeen, and her being recruited for a secret rebellion certainly brings familiar elements to mind. Are they going for a YA slant on this, catering to the Hunger Games/Divergent market? Personally I liked the Hunger Games (the books, I haven't seen the movies, though Battle Royale was better), but if that's really the angle I'm sure that's going to piss somebody off. Not that you can do anything these days without pissing somebody off. (see next point)
  • We're going to have eight months of a certain segment of the population bitching about a female lead, aren't we? Nevermind that we don't even know if Jyn Erso is actually the main character or not, I've been around the Internet enough the last few years to know that this is probably going to be Ghostbusters all over again. I look forward to the day everyone can all just grow up and get over themselves.

Rogue One hits theatres December 16!

(Still not an A-to-Z Challenge post)
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Wednesday, April 6, 2016

E is for Exposed (#IWSG)

The first Wednesday of every month is officially Insecure Writer’s Support Group day. Writers post their thoughts on their blogs, talking about their doubts and the fears they have conquered. It's a chance for writers to commiserate and offer a word of encouragement to each other. Check out the group here.

I shouldn't have publicly said I would be done by the end of March. I know I didn't commit to any particular release dates, but the fact that I said I would do something and then didn't follow through grates me to no end. It's bad enough when I blow the deadlines I set for myself. It's much worse when I keep telling people it's coming soon and then it never comes out.

I've pushed the new book back several times. I originally wanted to have it out by the end of October (it's a horror book, I thought a Halloween release date would be fitting). In retrospect this was staggeringly overzealous on my part. The book needed a lot of work and has gone through several rounds of revision which I think has made huge improvements. But I just keep underestimating how long these revisions will take (for some reason I repeatedly forget that I have a life).

After I missed Halloween, then I thought I could have it out for Christmas... then Valentine's Day... then April Fool's (I like to keep my deadlines around holidays, makes it easier to remember them). Still nada. It's very close, but it's not quite there. Even though I know the work I'm doing is necessary, I'm still disappointed and I'm mad at myself.

I'm going to shut up talking about it because I feel like I'm just digging myself a bigger hole. I hate it when people keep talking about something they're working on but it never comes out. In my case I don't think I'm disappointing anyone by pushing back my release (my book is hardly The Winds of Winter) but it still feels like making excuses to me. Either put it out or shut up. That's my new motto.

Seriously, I don't even watch football. What's my excuse?

So yeah, no more talk about Hell Comes to Hogtown until it's actually available on Amazon for purchase. I may still talk about Star Wars, roleplaying games and wrestling (I know that's why all of you are here, anyway), but no more news about the book until I actually have something to say.



(This is not an A-to-Z Challenge post)
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Friday, April 1, 2016

Another Galaxy, Another Time (Episode 8 Spoilers!)

"Another galaxy, another time" is the original opening line to Star Wars: From the Adventures of Luke Skywalker, the novelization of Star Wars that was actually published 6 months before the film's release. It's not quite as catchy as "A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away" but I've always been fond of it.

Also, in this day and age it's unfathomable to imagine a novel coming out and spoiling a Star Wars movie a full six months before the film's release.

The secrecy surrounding The Force Awakens last year and the upcoming, as-yet-untitled "Episode 8" is staggering. And that's the way people seem to like it. Revealing spoilers in today's society is worse than insulting someone's mother or discussing religion. It's just not done in polite company. But you know who doesn't care about polite company? Mister Luke Skywalker himself, Mark Hamill:

Hamill has been making waves today promising he'll reveal a spoiler to the new film if he reaches 1 million Twitter followers, and has even supposedly been endorsed by the film's writer/director, Rian Johnson:

Media outlets from Entertainment Weekly to the BBC have picked up on the story (it's especially newsworthy since The Force Awakens was released on digital streaming today, and will drop on DVD/Blu-Ray on Monday), proving that anyone will talk about Star Wars to get hits on their website. Including me.

Of course, it's all probably some elaborate April Fool's joke, and maybe the spoiler he's about to reveal is that "C-3P0 says 'Thank the maker!'" or something equally trite, but the fact remains that someone as classy, kindhearted and self-depreciatingly hilarious as Mark Hamill SHOULD have at least a million Twitter followers. HE'S LUKE SKYWALKER AND THE JOKER, for crying out loud.

He's also weirdly attached to this god-awful ugly sweater, for some reason:

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Wednesday, March 30, 2016

A-to-Z Challenge 2016



That's not going to happen.


(Good luck to everyone who is participating, though!)
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Wednesday, March 2, 2016

IWSG March: Hell is Coming... (COVER REVEAL!)


The first Wednesday of every month is officially Insecure Writer’s Support Group day. Writers post their thoughts on their blogs, talking about their doubts and the fears they have conquered. It's a chance for writers to commiserate and offer a word of encouragement to each other. Check out the group here.

What am I insecure about this month? My new book is coming out VERY soon. I'm frantically going through edits and putting finishing touches on the cover and blurb. Will it be ready in time? Will it be any good? Will anyone read it?

Your guess is as good as mine, but I'm keeping my fingers crossed.

I figure now is as good a time as any to officially release the cover for my second novel...

Still tweaking it a little to get the blood splatters just right, but you're looking at it in all it's gory glory. The photograph was taken by the awesome Jason from Salvatori Photography and captures just the right amount of cheekiness that I was going for.

So what is this bloody horror comedy about a beautiful lady about you ask? Here's the blurb:

*  *  *

Fitz is the broke, sad-sack night manager for a grubby comic book store. His only friend Dee is a narcissistic, womanizing drug-addict and professional wrestler. Together they are lowest, most pathetic losers on the face of the planet. Their lives cannot possibly get any worse.

And then they are implicated in the kidnapping of the prime minister’s wife.

On the run from the cops, Fitz and Dee discover there is something far worse than the RCMP stalking the dark streets of Toronto. They are being hunted by an ancient demon of unspeakable evil with an insatiable thirst for blood... and booze.

Life in prison might actually be much better than whatever the creepy hobo has in store for them...

*  *  *

So yeah, it's coming soon. If you visit this site or follow me on social media you'll hear lots about it in the next few weeks as I fine tune everything. Any comments or suggestions on the blurb are welcome!

Needless to say I'm excited but also stressed and anxious. Hope everyone else is having an equally eventful month! Now if you'll excuse me I have to get back to editing...

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