June 2013

[Today, we have something special for you. And by “we” I don’t mean just my wife, the cats, and myself. Today we have a guest post from Author Starla Huchton, as part of her Blog Tour to promote her newly released book Maven. Starla has been all over the place with this blog tour, doing interviews, giving character interviews, sharing pre-release blurbs and talking a lot about the book. Well, I had to be different. I didn’t want to bring my readers the same kind of material that you could find at other blogs. So I asked Starla to write a guest post about what it took to bring Maven to print. All too often in the writing world, people focus on that first draft. Well, that’s just the tip of the iceberg  As you’ll see below, Starla put a lot of work in just to get her story ready to publish, and then she had to do all the publishing parts, too. It’s a little longer than your typical blog post, but I think Starla paints a fascinating picture of the process of self-publishing. Enjoy! – Doc]

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After only a week, I’d like to thank everyone who has offered their help towards getting The Perils of Prague ready for publication, especially considering the contact form I used last week didn’t work as expected. I’ve been contacted by eight different people so far who have voiced their willingness lend my project a hand. Some are fellow authors, who are willing to Beta read for me in exchange for having me Beta read their work. A couple are editors who are willing to offer their services if we can come to a compensation agreement that fits their available time and needs. This is exciting for me, but I still have to realize that things can fall through, and I still need a lot of help. I’ve been trying to organize the responses I’ve gotten,  and get in contact with each of them. If you’d like to help out, it still isn’t too late! Just drop me an e-mail, and let me know how you’re willing to help, and what kind of compensation you’d like to have for your services.

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Welcome back, my friends! It is time for another Balticon 47 Wrap-up episode brought to you by Balticon and Swimming Cat Studios! Today’s episode is Not Safe for Work, and Not Safe for Children! For today we have Dirty Mad Libs, Part 2! This episode features Starla Huchton as she goes through her Dirty Mad Lib with the assistance of moderator Patrick Scaffido and the late night Balticon audience. Not familiar with Dirty Mad Libs? In this popular Balticon game, your panelists have taken a steamy section from some piece of classic erotica and turned it into a mad lib. Then, with the help of the audience, they turn it into something beyond obscene. So, don’t listen to this unless you are not easily offended. And if you haven’t listened already, be sure to check out Dirty Mad Libs, Part 1!

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When I started Swimming Cat Studios, I named it because I was having to do a lot on my own, teaching myself as I went. I had some resources to steer me in the right direction, and a few friends who could give me suggestions, but I pretty much had to do it on my own. It is the only way to learn new skills. Over the years I’ve tried a lot of new things, had some success, and some failures, and learned a few things.

One of the things I’ve learned is that there are some things you can’t do for yourself.

And that is why I’m asking you if you’d be willing to help me out.

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The Balticon 47 Wrap up rolls on! In today’s installment, we are happy to bring you a panel whose recordings have been highly sought after in previous Balticons: Dirty Mad Libs. And when we say dirty, we mean it! This episode is Not Safe for Work, and Not Safe for Kids! On Dirty Mad Libs, we start with classic erotica, make a mad lib of it, then gather words from the audience to make the result even more obscene! And hilarious! So only proceed to listen to this episode if you are not easily offended by material that has sexual themes and may have some very perverse leanings. This episode is EXPLICIT and RUDE! How many times do I have to warn you? 

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Time to bring Back from Balticon to an end. This is part 4, the Final Installment. (cue dramatic music) Time to take a look at Memorial Day Monday. A day to do more than franticly pack up your hotel room and say teary good-byes to friends old and new in the lobby (although that happens too). It is a day to take some time to remember those men and women who gave their all to establish and defend America, and be grateful for the things that their sacrifice has brought us. It’s also the last day of con; there are still panels going on, and some of the coolest stuff is saved for last.

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For part 2 of the Balticon 47 Wrap up, we’re jumping right into the action with a special episode of Metamor City recorded live at Balticon! Regular listeners of Metamor City will have already heard this episode, but for those who have yet to discover Metamor City, this is a taste of the high quality storytelling you will find from Chris Lester and the others who have been able to play in Chris’ world.

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In part 1, I talked about some of the wonderful people, both old friends and new friends, who make Balticon such an amazing event for me. In part 2, I went over a couple of the highlights of the first half of the weekend. Now, in Part 3, we’re going to look at the rest of the weekend.

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What? This again? Didn’t we just finish this?

No, not quite. That was the Balticon 46 Wrap up, but this weekend was Balticon 47. So now we have a whole new series of audio! And this year’s series promises to be bigger, and features some really amazing recordings from Balticon 47. And we’re going to start the series off where Balticon started off, with the very first panel.

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No one can tell you what the Magic Spreadsheet is. You have to experience it for yourself. But darned if I’m not going to try.

Since coming back from this year’s Balticon, I’ve had a number of people ask me “What is the Magic Spreadsheet?”. So I looked back over my past posts to point them to an answer, and found that I don’t really have a post that addresses that question well. So, it is time to give that a try.

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