Month: March 2017

Using Data Science To Pick Your Reading List

Who are your favorite authors? What are your favorite books? If you have a voracious reading appetite and have finished up the stack on your desk, or the purchases on your Kindle, what do you do next? Amazon has figured you out.  They serve you up the “also boughts” category so that you can see what other readers buy right after you mkae a purchase.  You might buy more but you haven’t even started reading the first book you bought.  What happens when you finish your book and now need to go look for the next one? I suppose...

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Is It Time To Take A Writing Class?

For the folks who build houses, repair complex machinery, or bake wedding cakes, they spend years to learn, and train, and master their craft.  (For my dayjob, I had three years of graduate school, a grueling multi-day certification exam, and then years of “apprenticing” to learn my trade.) I have concluded that fiction writing is not much different.  So I signed up for a class with Dean Wesley Smith.  Here is the suggested curriculum order and I started with a six-week course of Depth. The theory behind Depth is to help you the writer pull the reader in deep, so...

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A Tribute To The Old School Classics of Alien Invasion Space Marine Sci-Fi

I try to feature indie pub authors here because I feel like I personally had so little exposure to them until recently and now that I have been enjoying indie works, I want to help amplify their reach to readers. However, my “research” into the Alien Invasion/Space Marine subgenre means that I run across the classics, and boy, these are cult classics for a reason. First up, the ultimate space marine novel: Starship Troopers by Robert Heinlein. Not the movie, the novel.  I had only recently read it and it struck me as immensely political.  Regardless, if you want to...

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[First Contact: Alien Encounters] Earth Alone by Daniel Arenson

I’ve fallen in love with reading First Contact, Alien Invasion themed science fiction. Originally it started out as “research” since my co-writer and I had been brainstorming a prequel to our Cold War series.  This led to a deep dive into all things alien and I haven’t climbed out since. Even movie nights at my house now must have an alien theme.  Not surprisingly, we watched Arrival [BD/Digital HD Combo ] [Blu-ray] the other weekend (it was excellent btw!) which was based on the amazing Ted Chiang’s Stories of Your Life and Others.  The short fiction was a fantastic read,...

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[Alien Invasion: Earth Resistance] Mercury’s Bane by Nick Webb

I’ve wrapped up three sci-fi book reviews on First Contact stories by indie authors.  Now it’s on to a related and equally fun subgenre, the alien invasion/colonization of Earth theme. Apparently, I’ve been living under a rock because this is the first novel I have read of Nick Webb’s and he has really dominated the space opera charts on Amazon.  Mercury’s Bane: Book One of the Earth Dawning Series (Volume 1) is his newest and it was a rollicking good read. Setting: Near future. Aliens:  Humanoid, advanced race, has spoken language and can communicate with humans.  Has a political structure, has a...

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Julia Vee, Writes At Night