What to say about the SCP Foundation that hasn’t been said before, usually better, sometimes with animation? A whole hell of a lot because it’s a treasure trove of literally hundreds of documents that translate into hundreds of extended and interconnected stories of a universe that Lovecraft would have recognized. Unfortunately for us all, I’ve got a migraine so I’ll let someone who speaks about the Foundation for a living do all the talking because I can’t make sense.
Today let’s delve into something a little unusual. 0.0Mhz is a webtoon I stumbled across some years ago when I had a horror craving in the middle of the night. I couldn’t put it down until I’d run out of pages and then I couldn’t sleep because I was trapped under the blankets, in the dark and for a rare wonder I was terrified of what lay behind the warm and close confines of my own blanket.
It’s vivid portrayal of the summoning ceremony in 0.0 Mhz sent chills through this experienced witch (aka do not try this). The dark and desaturated colors and limply dragging characters, whose very hair seems oddly weighted down, lends such an impressive oppressive atmosphere. Jump scares aren’t always an easy thing to do with a static webtoon but it definitely pressed on my fear button good and hard.
Looks like recently this gem, like so many other webtoons has gotten a live action adaptation! The world is a quickly evolving place, for a public fed up with remakes, the internet is a treasure trove of fresh ideas and fresh art styles. Some studios are taking notice and creating content, films, radio plays, animation, to varying degrees of skill, scale and care of course.
And that’s Day 2 down! Tomorrow, I don’t know, maybe a game. See you later voodoo loves.
Well, hello! Everything is terrible and some parts of the world are literally on fire so I thought: “fuck it, let’s have some fun.” So I’m going to challenge myself to 30 days of horror posts. They’ll probably be all over the place, some movie recommendations, some games, maybe some manga or webtoons. Seat of the pants winging this shit.
Starting it all out with “Creep.” I am a woman that has loved horror since she was seven years old, so my tastes run deep and specific. When it comes to horror films I find I love the found footage genre the most (except for The Blair Witch Project, who asked you to put out some propagandist bullshit right around the time I came out about witches in my favorite horror genre, fuck you and all the misconceptions I’ve come across because of you). My favorites tackle the limits of their sub genre in a variety of brilliant ways but not all of them.
I won’t tell you if “Creep” is one of those or not, but I will tell you it’s one of the most genuinely creepy films you’ll ever watch. Which has definitely been said and said better before. What hasn’t is that the worst part for me was when I recognized the behavior as one of a former friend of mine, still terrifying. Really good horror seems to fluctuate between things that are very visceral and personal for you or things that you can appreciate from a much more cerebral place–but I’ll get more into that when we get to the horror games I guess. Take it as a recommendation and go watch.
Want to read a particular review? Shoot me a comment her on WordPress or Facebook and I’ll write it up if I know it. I mean, I think I’ve got enough horror experience for an impromptu 30 day challenge but I am often wrong so, help maybe.
Hello Readers! It’s been a while hasn’t it? Especially since I disappeared with what I told you was pretty much a finished draft of “Tasting Ash,” I know it’s been hard on you. Well, it’s finally time for me to be real with you guys and tell you what is going on.
The last two years have been hard on a lot of artists. Quite a few have found themselves unable to commit to creative projects or dropping projects half finished. Some have found themselves entirely frozen by fear. While others have dedicated their time and talents to trying to bring focus to topical issues and make a difference, no matter how seemingly small.
It’s time to admit that I am one of those artists.
In the last two years I’ve dropped all my projects and done absolutely everything I could (without endangering my desperately needed day job) to make sure that my friends and loved ones are better informed than they were at around this time last year. I know I have been successful in starting several conversations and I know I’ve encouraged people to get involved in their districts. I even helped a friend edit their statements in their bid for public office. You probably didn’t notice and that is by design as I do not currently live in a place that responds well to liberal viewpoints, so I’ve worked behind the scenes as much as possible.
It hasn’t been an easy few years and there hasn’t been a lot of writing going on during it. I have to admit there’s a bit of fear in me that I’m still not doing enough or that I’ve done too much and might make myself a ready target. Either way I’ve done what I could and now it’s up to all of us to vote and hope things go a saner way.
I’ve decided that I want to move forward as if good things are actually coming, and stability will return. It just so happens that November is Nanowrimo and that competition has always been a great excuse for me to block out distractions and bang out some work. The novel I’m working on is unlikely to be a part of either of my current series. It is, by necessity, something totally new. Hopefully some of you will enjoy it anyway. I’ll be keeping you posted on word counts and maybe excerpts as the month continues on.
And please, whatever else you do next week, VOTE.
I’ve been hinting at this one for ages but it’s finally available for pre-order! If you’re a fan of my rare romances, then make sure to check out “When World’s Collide Pre-order” for another installment!
This anthology features works by myself as well as Catrina Taylor, Heather Birchfield and RaeAnne Hadley.
Anyone who has ever put there work out there has heard of criticism and everyone with a mouth has probably given a critique of something at some point, usually unasked for and since this is the internet (stupid) probably in the harshest of possible tones. It might surprise many to know that there’s a way to give criticism that’s actually helpful, that will help the person improve if they’re willing to listen. It’s even possible to give that criticism in such a way that they’ll want to listen to it.
When I went to college and majored in creative writing – this was an actual lesson we had to have at the beginning of the semester. Everything about it seemed pretty common sense but in order for all us tender young things to actually learn and progress rather than shrivel up on the vine, we needed to be on the same page. The same thing goes with all kinds of people who make things and have an internet presence. If you want them to keep making the stuff and improving, you’ve got to learn how to tell them that so they’ll actually hear you and not just run off into a corner crying after reading your first sentence.
It Starts With the First Sentence
The first sentence is always, always crucial. You can win or lose someone with just a handful of words so, choose carefully! When offering criticism that you want them to hear and heed it’s important to start from a positive place.
Remember the Positive
If you’re going to take the time to offer a helping hand towards improvement, you must have seen something in the work that you enjoyed. Start there. Know what you like and don’t be afraid to gush about it! Knowing what really struck a cord with you, might help them to understand that they’ve hit the right point somewhere, so they’re less likely to throw out all the things you loved as they improve their craft. There’s nothing worse than not really liking everything about someone’s work but really enjoying a few elements only to find that the next work doesn’t have any of those elements left in it.
Enhance That Image
Now that they know what you enjoyed, tell them ways to enhance that image. Talk about additional steps they could take to improve on what’s already a good thing.
Don’t Overemphasis the Bad
Eventually you’ll run out of the good bits to talk about and you’re going to want to talk about the bad things you want them to lance out like a infected boil. Hold up there buttercup. How much good stuff did you mention? A nice rule of thumb is to aim for no more than an equal number of bad things so they don’t get overwhelmed. Make sure you know what really bothered you so you don’t get bogged down with smaller pet peeves, prioritize.
Should go without saying but this is the internet (stupid) so it’s worth pointing out specifically: be polite, especially when you’re talking about someone’s faults. Remember that even though you’re talking about someone’s work, most creatives view their work as externalized parts of themselves, so everything negative you say about their work can feel like a personal attack.
You Want to Help
This is the most important part, even when you’re talking about the stuff you absolutely hated – you want to help. Don’t forget to offer possible solutions as you’re pointing out the bad bits, without this no amount of careful wording will make your criticism constructive. You need to not only know what you hated but why, how to improve it and most importantly how to tell them how they can do better.
That’s just about everything. As you can see it’s not an easy task but if you care enough about the thing the thing to try I promise you they’ll appreciate the effort. Don’t forget that while being helpful takes some actual work on your part, you can always just drop a positive word or two in the review section to brighten any creative’s day, seriously we live for that stuff. Now go forth and help improve the quotient of awesome in the world!
Almost as soon as I posted that the story was stalled and looking at a major gut, inspiration struck and I now have a concrete direction to take things in that shouldn’t be too drastic!
I’ve still got a lot of work ahead of me but instead of looking at draining an ocean with a teacup now I’m just looking at climbing a steep mountain. One is impossible, the other is hard as hell but doable. What a relief!
I’d say expect additional progress updates all over the place but don’t, school has started up again and I’m looking at accepting additional duties to make more ends meet. That means even less time for everything else but the hope is that taking these steps now will lead me more quickly to being able to put way more time back into my writing work. Fingers crossed!
I’ve been wracking my brain going through this rewrite and it was still horribly off. Time and again I’d have the thought that I loved this or that scene but I felt like Ash was leaning a bit to hard on this one character. Those thoughts eventually resolved themselves to “do I really need this character?”
Now I’ve come to the realization that I’ve got to delete that character, possibly in entirety. A character that was a vital part of the book, whose scenes will mostly be ruined by their absence. I think I’m looking at a 50-75% rewrite from scratch at this point. I’m still assessing the damage but it’s looking grim.
So that’s what I’ve been up to lately.
Am I really back? Yes I’m really back – at least until August when I gotta go back to the grind.
What kind of goodies can you expect, now that I’m really really back? Well first up – I’m about as far along with “Tasting Ash” as I was before I went poof. There just wasn’t really enough time and room for me to concentrate on the rewrite as it needs to be done properly, though I can assure you it’s never been far from my mind and that despite my lack of releases or blog posts – I have been writing.
My gran is 92, you see, and in the last year she gave us all a horrible shock, such a shock I insisted on dropping everything and flying home to see her briefly. While I was there I asked her what she would like me to write (my gran is great but she’s got no head for fantasy or horror so hasn’t read anything of mine since grade school when it was still mostly fairy princesses and love stories) and she said, “I’d love it if you’d write me a romance.”
Cue me, completely out of my element trying to fulfill my gran’s request. Some of you might remember that I’m not very good at romances. Lots and lots of practice is therefore required before I’ll finally have something I can show to my gran. Basically I’m saying I’ve got a folder full of horrific little Belladonna shorts that I’ve been adding to in my rare healthy and unoccupied moments. A few of them I actually think I might not die from embarrassment releasing out to the world, a very small few but a few nonetheless.
One of my other author friends who actually has a handle on this romance thing suggested an anthology and as luck would have it I had a nub of a story that seemed to fit the bill! So this summer there will be a new Belladonna short released upon the world in “When Worlds Collide: A Vampire Alien Romance Anthology!”
Those of you who are fans of my twisted little brand of romance are in for a right treat!
So it’s been forever and there’s a good reason for that, I recently returned to the world of day jobs and self loathing – and it almost killed me.
That’s not sarcasm either, I had no less than three incidents of illness where I was afraid for my life in the last ten months or so. All of which probably could have been prevented or drastically alleviated if I had been able to go to a doctor. Of course, I can’t afford healthcare even with the new job and paying out of pocket would have negated my entire savings. Savings I was desperate enough to earn that I kept going back, risking my health, for an entire year.
The good news is, I survived! I survived and I have manged to keep most of my savings! Money I’ve been using for some much needed replacing of various electronic bits that make this whole self publishing thing a reality as well as more professional edits.
I am exhausted.
So expect updates full of goodies to come but for right now I really need a nap!