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MisterChris

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MisterChris last won the day on June 7 2016

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About MisterChris

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  • Birthday 06/21/1963
  1. The Villain Drives The Story

    First, a theological answer - He stated that Adam and Eve dared to steal a share of God's divine nature. Ok, fine. But he goes on to name, Free Will, the Knowledge of good and evil, the capacity to create. I submit that he's batting .300. Adam and Eve already had the free will to choose to do good, or to disobey the One Rule. They also had the capacity, since they were 'made in His image', to create. I don't believe that our creative bent is a result of the Fall at all, and see no biblical justification for that view. Also, i take some umbrage at the idea that the Fall was a great thing for us as humans, though I can see his point as writers. More on that later. I'll give him cred that we love God more, for we have been forgiven more. If there were nothing to forgive, if we were sinless, I suspect we would love God because it's how we are wired, but seeing the wreckage behind us, we love Him 'more', for we are rescued, redeemed, in spite of ourselves. Okay, diatribe over, off the soap box. From a writer perspective, a story without conflict, without stakes, is not a story. If there is no risk, if there is no resistance, if there is no antagonist, there is no plot. Might as well pack up the typewriter and play Frisbee Golf. On my novels, the villains: Lynvia: Kever, regent sitting on the throne of Lynvia. A plotting, several moves ahead chess player who has been making hidden moves to permanently place himself on the throne since long before the story began. The reason for the death of the old king in a 'hunting accident'. A frustrated duke of a border region, who has been responsible for keeping invading armies at bay, with little to no thanks or appreciation, no recognition. A man who murdered his own father in ruthless ambition to move upwards. There should be better redeeming qualities in him, an internal struggle, some good involved. But his heart is black with ambition and past sin, and he charges forward to his own distruction. Bubba, a hopeless town drunk, running out of his inheritance and one foot ahead of the law, learns accidentally about a possible gold mine opportunity, a genie in the bottle, if you wish, that could make his wishes come true. He begins almost one-dimensional, hopeless and hapless drunken comedy relief, a bumbling villain. But through the course of a wake-up call, he becomes through the series a born-again, contributing member of society, a redeemed ornament of God's grace. Tark, king of the Western mountains, a ruthless black dragon, and the reason the dragon lands are split into two kingdoms. A human hater, a rage-filled ambitious Conan, this dragon forges ahead based on his own strength and ability to elicit fear in dragon and human alike. Overconfident and pride-filled, headed for a fall of epic proportions. Dimension Doors of Destiny: Garivan; plotter, devious, a baron who rules through fear and intimidation, subterfuge and assassination. Fatal flaw is overconfidence. Betraying your own henchmen on a whim, his instability will be his undoing. Professor Pilfer: an intellectual, a thief, his driving force is revenge for being exposed as the charlatan he is. His destiny is joined inextricably to Dr. Shaklford, a brilliant physicist. This relationship seems born from too many viewings of the Fantastic 4. Lyra: an animated, intelligent vine, with the ability to rapidly grow and cover everything with sour grapes. Dangerous, vengeful, distrusting, plotting. Her redeeming feature is that all along, distrusted and shunned, she just wanted to lead her people to a better future. Charles Walther: tycoon turned regional governor, aimed to become world dictator in a post-apocalyptic society. An immeasurable wealth, still the promise of additional wealth draws him. A user, a manipulator, greed is his fatal flaw, His redeeming feature is that, in private, he is tormented by guilt at the many who 'have not' for the few that 'have'. Sorry, that covers about 8 books total, TMI I am sure.
  2. Audiobook Advice

    So, this Christmas season, I'm reading my first novel to a computer. Using a good microphone, As an audiobook gift to a relative who mentioned he would not read my book, but would listen to an audiobook of it. For that application, a raw edit is probably sufficient. But, I'm looking for advice on taking this to a professional level, and possibly publishing to Amazon's Audiobook inlet, ACX So, multiple questions, and shameless requests for advice: 1. As I'm reading the book, I'm running across discontinuity issues, plot holes, contradictions, and the like. Pacing issues. etc. What's your thoughts on, before creating a audiobook for publication, revising a novel? New ISBN and different cover but same title? 2. When creating an audiobook, I've seen feedback from readers that they'd rather just have the novel read to them, no voice actors. No music. Has anyone who has published an audiobook gone through the trouble to get voice actors, sound effects, mood music, etc.? What's the benefit, is it mostly a distraction? 3. To indicate INTERNAL VOICE (Thoughts, generally italicized in my novel), I'm considering adding a noticeable reverb/echo, to indicate it's thoughts. What are your 'thoughts' on this technique? 4. ACX has a significant list of pointers that make creating a quality recording for an audiobook difficult. Is it your experience, if you've published an audiobook, that a reasonable recording via a laptop and decent mic (no hiss) is sufficient? 5. I find that while recording, airlines take that time to fly over. With my mic levels set low, I still get a slight rumble while reading. I know of no way to record without getting background noise in. My bedroom is reasonably soundproofed from the rest of the house, but external noises can be a problem. Is there an inexpensive relatively soundproof place where such recordings can take place? Do you take advantage of them when recording your own books? thanks in advance for any feedback, encouragement, criticism, or flames. :-)
  3. I need help. Im looking for a way to sell my book

    As an aside, living in the Memphis Area has given me some exposure to John Grisham's story. When he began his writing career, his first book was A Time To Kill, not The Firm, as generally believed. The article in this link mentions the fact that he started out selling that book wherever he could, including out of the trunk of his car. http://writersweekly.com/this-weeks-article/publishing-your-book-is-not-enough-by-jim-gilliam I'll admit that once an author has name recognition, they can sell books simply because of notoriety and name recognition, but it probably wasn't an easy road getting to that point. As I understand it, even J K Rowling met with a long list of rejection letters before getting a big publisher to back Harry Potter. I've heard that we should just write, publish, and trust God with the increase, and while there is truth to trusting God, He often required some sweat equity out of Israel, and the same is true for us. There's a lot of good ideas put in this thread on marketing your self-pub work. and if you Google that subject, you will find many more ideas. I would recommend using Amazon Kindle for an eBook version, as Amazon gets more exposure than SW and does marketing very well, but you can actually publish through both for free. (Unless you use KDP select).
  4. Writing Goals For 2016

    I'm baaack... (after a long Sabbatical doing parent and work things...) But, I've been busy writing and such. For example, last July 4th weekend I released my second book in my Prince of Lynvia series (Of Mobsters and Magic) and had a giveaway of Book 1 (Of Secrets and Sorcery). Had quite a few takers on that giveaway on Amazon, but no reviews as of yet, except I have heard verbal ones from a handful of family and friends who have read and enjoyed it... In 2016 my writing goals are rather odd: 1. Complete an RPG video game based on my series using RPG GameMaker VX Ace (and hopefully MV version when it is complete). This is a HUGE task and will take much of my spare time this year, the game will bridge 6 worlds and cover about 100 hours of gameplay. The game will carry the plot of my series forward to answer some major questions left hanging when the 4-book series is complete. I now have about 20 minutes gameplay created. But most of that has been laying groundwork, plot, and artwork. 2. Read Book 3 (Of Pretty Plots and Princesses) to my kids and get my daughter to complete the cover art for it!!! 3. Complete a final edit on Book 3 and get it published by EOY 2016. 4. (If I have any time at all) Complete the rewrite of Book 4, Of Dragons and Dopplegangers. It is currently a bit of a train wreck at present, and I'm wrestling with God on how it will end. I think He wants me to continue along the path of a showdown Question and Answer session with God Himself, (sort of a Face to Face over coffee and Fairy Dust) but I am quaking in my sneaks about how to handle that...
  5. Copyright - what to include

    Think it's $45 or so per work.
  6. Copyright - what to include

    When you file for Copyright online, submitting materials digitally, the Copyright is instantaneous and dates back to when you submit, but you really can't claim infringement without being able to log into their site and seeing your work there. (Did this for my music but never did for my novels.) It was fun getting the official documents in the mail, and I have them in a lockbox. But unless you (or others) make a significant amount of money from your work, the copyright doesn't matter from your perspective. It's more to protect you in case someone steals your work, files for copyright, then claims you stole their work. In a legal battle like that, CreateSpace records (I believe) can stand in court that you submitted the work as stands before the copyright was filed by another.
  7. Write A Story In 6 Words

    The victim hid his own body. The tomb empty; Jesus is alive! Snake was quick, gun was quicker.
  8. Why Readers Stop Reading a Book

    Could not agree more, especially now that I am reviewing. I've found that some books violate one or more of these, and it's only because I'm reviewing that I continue on. I will admit, that often by the time I get to chapter 10 or so, where the story really picks up the pace, that I get hooked there. Don't know how many times I have had that happen.
  9. How Many Non-fictionists Do We Have?

    I am voting here as well because although I mainly have written fiction, I have several projects waiting in the wings and one active work that may well be my next published work Children/memoir(active) Life in Hyperspace A humorous account of my kids and pets in our ADHD home (four kids and two parents dealing with ADD, ADHD and multiple neurotic pets - You can read some of it on my blog ADHDFamilyFun.blogspot.com 12 Questions Of Pilate A devotional exposition on Pilates questioning of Jesus 12 Unlikely Apostles A devotional
  10. Human Like Aliens.

    The Kree look human, but blue, at least on Agents of Shield. And Thor's race seemed more human than the Kree. When I've seen this explained at all in literature, it's been either set far in the future, with humans having spread through the galaxy, as in Aasimov's Foundation series, or humans are plants here, the result of a crash landing by an 'alien race' (Heinlein's Have Space Suit, Will Travel) or James P Hogan's Inherit The Stars. Or cross-breeding from abducted humans. Better to ask God how far you can cross the line than me. While traditional Christian publishing houses may balk at a scifi book about aliens, other traditional publishing houses certainly would not, and God's the one you finally answer to, not them, not us. Bryan Davis seemed to handle the alien postulate well in his Starlighter series, while being Christian and published that way. As I said earlier, I would not sweat it, if you have a story to tell, tell it. If it closes some doors in the traditional Christian market, it opens doors elsewhere. And if it's His story, it's His problem to see how it is marketed and sold.
  11. Human Like Aliens.

    Bet Phy could answer this better. I wouldn't sweat it. An intelligent designer might Not make aliens different from humans The bible does not mention people's on other planets. So they could be there, but if so, they would either need to be sinless or have provision for salvation, or be damned. They could even be demons.
  12. Question On Digital Distribution Companies

    CreateSpace is the paperback book publishing arm of Amazon. They are absolutely free to set up your book and get it ready to print. Once it prints, they charge you a flat charge per book PLUS a per-page cost. Here's a link to how they calculate their own share of your book: https://www.createspace.com/Products/Book/Royalties.jsp For Kindle, it is the same thing - free to set up an account, which can be linked to your own Amazon account, free to upload your book and have them check the format for compatibility. Then they charge you a flat percentage. There are two royalty models with Kindle, in one you get 35%, the other, you get 70%. I'm fuzzy on the difference, and why you would ever choose the 35% model. And HERE's A LINK as to why you might - if you want to sell for less than $2.99, or if your book is too large (graphics etc) and you'd lose money per download because of download fees. Kindle also has Kindle Select, which allows you to have 'giveaways' on Amazon Kindle. But ONLY if you agree to ONLY sell digital copies through Amazon Kindle during a 3-month period you are enrolled in Kindle Select. It may auto-renew, also, but you should be able to opt out at the end of your 3-month period. D2D apparently is 'Draft To Digital'. Here's their website, I know less than nothing about them. looks like they are simply another option like Smashwords. On their website, looks like you keep 90%... and can give your book away. Apparently there are also other options for digital books, like KOBO I did not find out from them how much it costs per book, and what you make per sale, but it appears there are levels to your take - that is, sell 100+ you get x%, sell 1000+ copies you get xx%...
  13. Reviews, Arcs, And Discouragement

    Hey David, I'm going to try posting via Reality Calling's submission page again, at a minimum (as a programmer and beta tester) to verify it's working. Let me know if you get them via that way. If not, I can certainly post a description of them here. Ok, I just hit the submit button...
  14. Reviews, Arcs, And Discouragement

    @Lynn/@Carol - I've been recently reading books for review on my iPhone Kindle App, and when you turn the last page it immediately comes up with a screen to rate the book, and a panel to key in a minimum 20 word review. I tested that on my kindle version of my first book, and it does it for mine as well. Printed copies are a different matter, and I agree it would be good to have a good blurb on that in the back, probably around the 'About the Author', or before the rest of the back matter (Discussion Questions, vocabulary, games, etc.) I think it might even be good to put links on my Author Website that take you directly to the Amazon site for the book, to leave a review, as well as an email address to send me hate/love mail. @David - If that was directed at me, then right, I have dropped by Radiqx and sent you a request. Nice site, with honest reviews. My books are both Christian fantasy. If it wasn't directed at me, then we return you to your regularly scheduled program. :-)
  15. Self-publishing And Traditional Publishing

    Check out the table on the following link at Forbes, written by an executive who took the Traditional Route... please note that it does not cover the timeline required in submitting query letters to agents, then getting the agent to market query letter and first chapter submissions to editors, etc. Her story was unique in that a friend (read:networking contact) had an 'in' with a publisher and was able to give her an assist getting her book in front of an editor. Once they bite, they give you a solid advance on your royalties, expecting that it may sell as many as 10k copies. From that moment on, it's pretty much their book to edit or request changes, you retain copyright, but they have publishing rights for the work, and you cannot publish it elsewhere, may have little or no say on the cover, front or back matter, etc. It will be spelled out in a contract. The traditional route can be 3-6 months (or 3-6 years) to land a contract, then a year or so to get the manuscript into their standards, edited and ready for publication. Self-publishing, you can be ready in less than a week with your book on Amazon and Kindle, but it needs to be edited, proofread, and formatted by you or someone you contract/know, for it to have any life. And then comes the marketing. You need a following, either way, to sell. http://www.forbes.com/sites/juliapimsleur/2014/11/04/traditional-publishing-vs-self-publishing/#53fb38764489 Here's a tongue-in-cheek flowchart from a few years back on which method works for you, and whether you are ready or not for either... It's fairly accurate, even if amusing. http://thewritelife.com/self-publish-or-traditional/ And another article on it: http://www.how-to-write-a-book-now.com/self-publishing.html Be advised that although several of these articles express that self-publishing can cost an author thousands, that is principally referring to Vanity Presses, which charge you an up-front fee to publish - this fee theoretically applies to editing services (if any), cover design (if any) and a stipulated set of books to sit in your garage... But with Print On Demand, there is no upfront fees, they charge you per book as they are ordered, so you only see the profits from them. For paperback, that can be hefty - CreateSpace takes about $14 out of every 400pp book I sell. However, if I order the books myself, and sell them at Writers Conferences, Comic Cons, fantasy Cons, etc, I can sell them for $10 and still make a profit. Via Kindle I was able to upload content and was selling within a week. I did the editing and formatting for eBook. You get a 35% or 70% royalty on each book sold, with a minimum sale price of around $3. Pray about your decision, it is a big one. Either way, getting a book to market and sold is a daunting but doable task.

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