The Veil War

"and then I was like, 'Holy crap, goblins!'"

Tactical Suitcase Raptor

raptor
What is it?

Tactical Suitcase Raptors are the latest in Raptor Warfare technology. Think of them like a small scale suitcase nuke that is limited to a single room. We raise Raptors from an egg and when they’ve matured to optimal destruction age we lovingly pack them in a suitcase for you to let loose and destroy your foes in a furry of teeth and claws.

Why use it?

  • It looks like a natural predator attack (really who is going to believe you smuggled a raptor in a suitcase?)
  • They’re re-usable if you can get the raptor back in the suitcase
  • ITS A FUCKING RAPTOR IN A SUITCASE

Proper Deployment of Your Tactical Suitcase Raptor

Point your Suitcase in the direction you want to deploy your raptor in.

Open the suitcase OUTWARD*

*Opening the suitcase facing you will result in imediate devouring of yourself. There are no refunds for an improperly used Tactical Suitcase Raptor.

RUN YOU DAMN IDIOT

Originally from here.

Free at Last

Our long, national nightmare is over. The job is dead, long live the job – I have left the land of four hour daily commutes and will soon enter the sunlit uplands of more-or-less reasonable commutes and bounteous telecommuting.

What does this mean to me, you ask? Aside from the everyday sort of distant and attenuated joy one feels at good news for someone they don’t really know, there is this: The Veil War, which has languished most of this last year, will resume its steady march toward completion. Upwards of twenty hours a week are about to be injected into my week, time which will in large measure be devoted to editing and expanding the Veil War.

More updates as I catch up on some sleep and begin to figure out where to begin.

What’s new, pussycat

After a long absence, here are some brief updates on things:

  • #2 son is larger, more alert, and more mobile than he was last time I posted about him. Given that he was only hours old the first time, this should not be surprising.
  • Editing on the Veil War continues. I’ve gotten some great feedback from grammar SMEs and violence SMEs, and the new version is shaping up to be a significant upgrade from version 1.0. Sadly, this is a slow process because of my work – and more to the point – commuting schedule.
  • Other writing also continues. I’m finding it easier a lot of the time to do a little bit of writing on the smaller projects in the small chunks of free time I find than it is to get into the mindset needed for focused and quality editing.
  • The Saga of Subcommandante Mumbles is about to have a new episode, which will also be available for purchase on Amazon. Other short stories are in various stages of completion.
  • I am hopeful that the amount of time I spend on the DC metro area’s fine highways and public transit systems will precipitously drop in the near future. Any positive change in this area will speed the day that the Veil War is complete.

So there it is.

How was your day?

A new Gustav

My second son and fifth child was born this morning:

photo

Joseph Samuel is a healthy nine pounds and 21″. He and mom are sleeping peacefully while I keep inquisitive other children away with bribery and death threats.

Progress

Thanks for all those who have bought Call Me Mumbles. And and even greater heaping load of thanks for those who have reviewed it.

Now ranked #42! (In science-fiction anthologies and short stories).

If you’d like to join the fun – and you should – you can buy and review the story here.  I’m also setting up an Amazon author page, which should be visible shortly at this address: amazon.com/stephengustav.

::: SUBLIMINAL MARKETING :::

::: BUY MY STORY :::

I am for sale

As of a few minutes ago, the first installment of the Subcommandante Mumbles vs. The Dinosaur Nazis saga became available for sale on Amazon. This is my first foray into the digital publishing (for cash money) business and, I must say, I am mildly excited. I’d be more excited, but my emotional spectrum runs only from mildly annoyed to mildly excited.

BUY Call Me Mumbles at Amazon

IMPORTANT NOTE:

For those of you that read the story, you would do me an enormous service by visiting the Amazon page for Call Me Mumbles to leave a review. And, if you enjoyed it, please consider buying a copy yourself.

OTHER IMPORTANT NOTE:

If you haven’t read it, go buy it. I guarantee you will get your dollar’s worth.

 

[also wik] Since the story is now available for sale, I’ve pulled it from view here at Veil War.

Hey! I’m not dead

By way of a status report, a few items for your consideration and edification:

  • I’m not dead
  • Writing continues to happen
  • Editing continues apace

Informative, no? To allow you a peak behind the curtain, here is what’s afoot:

Editing on the Veil War is about 2/3 done. When it’s complete (more on that schedule in a moment) or nearly so, a couple things will happen in quick succession. Part of the novel will be offered for sale on Amazon. A kickstarter project will be launched to raise money for copyediting and artwork. Your help and support will be crucial in making this all work, and I’ll provide more details as the DAY approacheth.

The Mumbles story, which started as a joke but which you all seemed to enjoy more than I expected, will go up for sale on Amazon shortly. Strangely enough, almost certainly before Veil War and in fact – probably within a week or so. Once it is up for sale, it won’t be visible in it’s entirety here.

I’ve also written another Mumbles story, and I’ve sketched out plans for a couple more to make a full story arc. The resulting paste-up novel would end up in the ballpark of short novel length. Episodes 2 and onwards will get teasers he on the site as they go up for sale.

In addition to the Mumbles tales, I have completed three (3) whole short stories. One is in the world of the Veil, another is a ripping yarn of space opera co-written with my son, and the last is something else entirely. They are variously being polished, submitted and otherwise being prepared for you to read; more details as they become clearer.

***

The schedule for all this writing stuff is dependent on other, more important schedules. My wife and I are expecting, imminently, a new son. Once he arrives I’ll be taking time off from work, and in between helping out the wife I’ll be making a hard push to finish the edits on the Veil War, and get a few more random piles of text transformed into stories. The mere fact of not having to commute for a couple weeks should make that a reality.

So soon, there will be things to buy, and new things to read.

And just a reminder: you are all outstanding, handsome and clever people, and I am pleased to have you all as readers.

 

I am moved

No really, I just moved. Which is why Subcommandante Mumbles vs. The Dinosaur Nazis isn’t done even though there’s only only 500 words left.

But don’t worry, I didn’t suddenly keel over like the cartoonist in Quest for the Holy Grail. I’ll finish it as soon as my office is set up…

Dinosaur Nazis (other ones)

A sudden urge to google overtook me this morning, and this is what I found:

When you type “Dinosaur Nazi” into the google, most of the top results are for two things: Dino D-Day and Chronos Commandos: Dawn Patrol. The first is a game, the second a comic book.

Dino D-Day started as a half-life mod, but is now grown up and a complete first-person shooter. The creators did up some fun propaganda posters:

Chonos Commandos: Dawn Patrol is a five-issue comic series from Titan Comics.


Awesome. Here’s some sample pages:

There’s some other stuff, too. In May another comic will be released, Half Past Danger:

Here’s a really old Dinosaur Nazi comic. And then there’s this:

And sprinkled throughout the search results, there’s links to this weird story.

The Really Big Idea: M. H. Mead

I was going to say something clever about the interesting essay that follows. But I am totally distracted by horror at the thought of rule 34 applied to this phrase:
Meaty Tiddlywinks. Once you recover please read this excellent essay:

Meaty Tiddlywinks

Car crashes are scary.  The auto companies spend millions every year trying to convince us that their cars are the safest, but we know better. We’ve watched too many movies that show us how easy it is for cars to shoot into the sky, roll over, and blow up. Thanks to YouTube and dashboard cameras, we can watch Stupid-People-Who-Are-Not-Us smashing into other cars left and right, rebounding from stationary objects, and blasting pedestrians into the air as if they were meaty tiddlywinks.


TakingTheHighway-1000x1600

In films, the scariest crashes aren’t the ones we see from a distance, but rather the interior shots where gravity suddenly seems cancelled due to lack of payment and the view out the windshield  stops making sense. When the passengers dangle from their safety restraints and their personal possessions begin the mid-air waltz of underwear in the tumble dryer, we have to cover our eyes.

If watching car crashes second hand is bad, the near-misses we’ve had are terrifying. Looking into a rear view mirror in anticipation of a rear-ending makes us feel helpless. The loss of control that we feel when the tires hit a patch of ice makes our hearts seize and our breathing stop. It’s probably the lack of control in general that is so unnerving; one likes to be the captain of one’s destiny, the pilot of one’s soul, the composer of one’s metaphor—and we don’t like when reality intrudes on that delightful illusion.

We both drive a lot, and almost all our trips take us on the highways around Detroit. We see the carnage of driving-gone-wrong every day. Maybe that’s why crashes scare us so. We know we’ll probably never be taken hostage by bank robbers or flee from a tsunami. But a car accident? Highly likely. In fact, they’ve already happened to both of us, and in Harry’s case, it was nearly fatal.

There are a lot of car crashes in Taking the Highway—terrifying collisions where the people don’t just have to worry about their own driving or the dubious skills of the other drivers, but about the very technology that is supposed to keep them safe.

In the fictional world of Taking the Highway, cars and highways work together to keep drivers safe. Overdrive technology—an artificial intelligence system—lines every highway in Detroit. Overdrive monitors the flow of traffic and sends override codes to cars to keep them from speeding, veering, or crashing.

That is, until things go horribly wrong. Someone is sabotaging Overdrive, confusing the sensors and causing horrific accidents. Is it somehow connected to the carpool laws, and the professional hitchhikers who are paid to fill cars? Or does it go deeper, into the sordid politics of Detroit itself? The only one who can stop the crashes is homicide detective Andre LaCroix, who has to arrest the culprits before becoming their next victim.

Writers are told to write what they know. But it’s more important that we write what scares us. And what scares us is car crashes. We hope it will also be what scares you, because cars of the future will be safer than ever—and will fail in ways we can only dream of.

M.H. Mead is the shared pen name of Margaret Yang and Harry R. Campion. When not writing books together, they can be found at their homes in Michigan watching very bad television and eating key lime pie.

Buy Book: Taking the Highway

Visit the author’s website | facebook

 

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