Shameless Self-promotion

Since it’s the weekend and many of the Facebook writer’s groups I’m in only allow links and promo posts on weekends, I thought I’d pack as much as I could into one article!

First, there’s this blog in which I write about whatever I feel like writing about. It could be about something actually happening in my life. It might be about a new geeky product, game, movie/tv or book that’s gotten me excited. It could be an article about the writing process itself. Or it could be an idea I’ve had for a story that I’m not currently working on.

These general articles can all be found under the ‘Blog of Indefinite Purpose‘ tab, and are categorised and tagged to make them easier to browse through. Everything except ‘secret stash’ articles are also shared to my author page on Facebook, Antony M Copeland.

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Then there’s the book I’m currently working on. Hermes925. I’m writing it a bit at a time, as if they were journal entries written by the protagonist, Jaime. Here’s what I have so far:

Hermes925 also has it’s own Facebook Page.

Dragon attacking City

Then there’s also City of Gate, a long running fantasy rp group on Facebook. Basically, I update the group every Sunday to tell the group members what’s happening. If they’ve created a character, they then have until the following Saturday to add a comment describing what their character is doing in response to the situation. It’s fun, and it keeps me on my toes, often having to come up with new layers for the narrative based on what the player controlled characters are doing.

Over the years I’ve written quite a bit of non-player character backstory. You can read this in the City of Gate group under files. I’ve played with the idea of making this into a book, filling in the gaps between character-written accounts with a more traditional narrative based on the events that have already taken place in the game. The project is on pause while I focus on finishing Hermes925. If you’re curious though, you can check out the City of Gate: Chronicles tab or the City of Gate: Chronicles Facebook page.

Boom! One link filled article that would do the job of a timeline full! I look forward to any and all feedback, I can take it! Have great day 🙂

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Techno-Babble

I like technology in general, and particularly internet and mobile devices. Occasionally it can be very frustrating and expensive. I’m sure Mark Zuckerberg and Elon Musk would agree with me. For those unsure what I’m referencing, here’s a video of a SpaceX rocket containing a very expensive Facebook satellite exploding on the launch pad.

It seems SpaceX were doing a test launch of the Falcon9 rocket containing Zuckerberg’s $200 million (about £150 million) satellite, and something went wrong when they tried to bring it back down. To me it looks like the rocket simply didn’t land straight and it toppled over, causing the the remaining rocket fuel to ignite. A very expensive mistake resulting in smoke on the water and fire in the sky.//embeds.audioboom.com/boos/3736250-deep-purple-smoke-on-the-water/embed/v4?eid=AQAAAKBXyVe6AjkA

However, that’s not the main topic of today’s article. My family and I have just moved to a new home in Kidwelly, as I may have already mentioned, several times. We were supposed to have had the internet service connected yesterday, but we were told by the customer service representative at BT that the engineers wouldn’t know anything else until next tuesday. It’s now friday. BT have had 18 days to figure this out, and didn’t tell us there was a problem until my Mum called.

This means I had to resort to plan B in order to get internet access. You may be wondering why I don’t just do without. You are currently reading the reason why. This is currently my only job. If I don’t have internet access, than I can’t post articles. If I can’t post articles, I have no chance of building my audience and increasing traffic to my website. Without traffic I don’t get new subscribers. Without donations from generous subscribers I have no income.

It’ll be a little different when I get Hermes925 published, but that’ll require money too if I self-publish. If I go through a traditional publisher, assuming they don’t flat out reject it, they may require me to make drastic changes. After working with my audience (that’s all of you reading this) to beta test each part of the story and come up with a book that you are all excited to read, it would be very disappointing to produce a book that doesn’t match your expectations, or my vision.

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My Dad also uses the internet for his work. The reason why we moved is because, once he’s licensed for this parish, he’ll be priest-in-charge of 3 local churches. He needs to check his e-mail and coordinate with various persons within the church community so he knows what he’s doing and when.

So, as you can see, We need internet. Luckily I’m tech-savvy enough to buy myself more data on my pay-as-you-go phone and turn on the wi-fi hotspot. Significantly more expensive to me personally that just using my parents’ BT wifi, but I don’t have much choice. My parents have already offered to help me pay for the data usage since they’re using it too, but I’d love it if I was able to generate enough income to make their help unnecessary. If you’d like to help a little, here’s the Paypal link.

Speaking of my self-proclaimed tech-savviness, perhaps those of you who are more so can help me solve a mystery. After I topped up the cellphone, I decided to do some recon around town to see where I could get a signal and where I couldn’t. What better way to do that than with Pokemon GO?

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I found I was able to get a signal loud and clear around Kidwelly Castle and the public footpath that runs along the river from the castle back to the town centre. However I found the town centre itself to be a complete deadzone. No signal at all. Very frustrating since there are several Pokestops that I can’t activate since the signal drops whenever I get near them.

As inconsistent as it seems for there to be no signal among civilisation, but a clear signal on a path cutting through grassland, that’s not what really confused me. Parts of town where I could at least get a weak signal on the way into town had no signal at all on the way back. I literally stood in the exact same spot where I had hit my first pokestop, and this time had no internet connection whatsoever. I do not understand this.

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The internet works great here!

Luckily I have not problem getting a signal at the house. It’s on the outskirts of town, apparently far enough from whatever jams the signal in town for uninterrupted access.  The only thing that makes sense to me is that the signal in town is being deliberately blocked. There is public BT wifi available, but you can only make use of if you have a BT sim card in your phone. I do not. I’m using 3.

Sorry Team Instinct, I’m not going to be able to be able to claim the local Pokemon gyms anytime soon. I will, however still be able to get plenty of writing done. I’m going to get the new Hermes925 posted next!

Have a great day, and thanks for the help 🙂

 

Wherefore Art Thou

I was going to write this article much earlier, but then found I wasn’t in the mood. However, I am laying in bed too hot, too restless and oddly too tired to sleep,  with ideas for this article still rattling around in my brain.  I’ll write, until I finally feel like sleeping. I might even get the whole thing done. (I didn’t, I added links and images the next morning).

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As you may have noticed, the blog articles have grown a little infrequent lately. If been putting the focus on writing the story instead. The goal after all, is to become a published author of Sci Fi and fantasy, and I’m not going to get there if all I write is my blog. I need to do what I set out to do, and don’t let myself get in my own way.

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If you haven’t been following my progress, please drag your mouse to the Hermes925 tab at top of the page and select each journal entry. As you can see Jaime has had (or will have, since it’s set in the future) his heart broken, his world view turned on it’s head and found a new obsession to take his mind off it all.

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It’s been a little difficult some days being strict enough with myself to write more. It helps that I already have planned out what I want to happen, but I often don’t know exactly what Jaime’s going to say until I start writing. He tends to rush through his thoughts, without disruptive descriptive details.

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I want to see how it works. Let the reader fill in the blanks, and maybe find some awesome art to each entry. For now I’ve been able to pull somewhat applicable images from the Internet, but I would love to receive artwork from readers and fans illustrating the world I created. Perhaps a picture of Mr. Waddle, or your impression of what it would be like to see the world through the N•Viron, an image of the Hermes spacecraft, or a painting of Jaime stepping through the portal doorway.

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Of course if you’d rather draw dragons and mages, perhaps The City of Gate is more your cup of tea. It doesn’t have to be specifically made for my work either. Any art you’d like to show off could be included in a blog post as an image and a link back to your own website or Etsy page. I already do something similar for blog articles I like.

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I’m not making any money yet, so I don’t have any to give, yet. When my book is successful, and I use your illustrations, then we’ll both get some money. In the meantime I’m happy to showcase any artist trying to put themselves out there. I’m even happy to help out musicians and fellow writers spread the word. If we want people to find us, without having to compromise, we need to show tham what we can do, and help each other out.

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I had a thoughts about YouTube too. Would anyone like to see me read each of the Hermes925 entries out loud? I’m sure it would be rather dull just watching me read though, but I could edit the video to include a montage of images, and perhaps background music. I could use this as another way show off some of the artwork and music sent in.

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I’m hoping that the YouTube channel  (once I have some content people like) and affiliate marketing will help keep me afloat while I get Hermes925 finished and published. If you want to help by offering your talents, advice or money please do! Comments are always welcome, as are donations via PayPal. Any art, music or writing you like me to share can be sent to AntonyM.Copeland@gmail.com

I hope you like the art I found online. Have a great day.

I’m So Excited!

I feel better about my future than I have in a long time. Despite well meaning people pointing out some of the difficulties and complications I might face going home. I assure you I’ve thought about it. I’ve thought of almost nothing but this as I saw my bills pile up and my paychecks get smaller. Deciding to go home feels like the right decision. It’s not the easy decision, it wasn’t even remotely easy. I’m still crying a little 5 days after I woke up just knowing that I miss my family, and I had to go home. I’ve been denying it too long.

We’ve covered this already. What we haven’t really explored, because I feel like it’s a little taboo to admit, is that a lot of this decision is tactical too. Being around people who miss me, love and support me, is part of that. It’s going to give me a more positive environment to write in. The stress has been distracting! I didn’t really notice it was there until I snapped 5 days ago.

If I can get by for a while on the money I’d make as in home care, I can still get a lot more writing time. I’d could even snuggle up in the living room as Grandma natters away watching tv and knitting. While Grandad flicks at the newspaper says random things that may be related to what he’s reading. As I scribble away in my notepad or tap at my tablet. It almost literally gladdens my heart to imagine it. I can’t frigging wait!

I love my Grandparents dearly, and I would be honored to live with them as long as the fates allow. I worry a little how they will accept my little weirdnesses. I like to dye my hair black and wear it both long and partly shaved. I like to have my nails badly painted and chipped. I’m also wearing a skirt as I write this. So far it’s a house-skirt. I’ve only been bold enough to walk to the end of the street and back in it.

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My Facebook profile pic.

I may not break out the skirt in front of them. I might try the nails though. They’ve seen me gothy before as a teen. They were great about it then. Very supportive. I shouldn’t be worried, but I am. Not sure what I’d actually do if Grandad makes fun of me, or challenges my manhood. I’m 36. I should have grown out of this by now right? I’m being ridiculous. They’re two of the best people I know. They’ve always been there for me. I need to be there for them.

I can hang out in the garden. Walk down to the local shop. Even nip to the nearby pub for a bit if I want. If circumstances necessitate, I might even be able to take the bus to town! I might even get into Pokemon Go! to encourage myself to get out and about. I may not need it though. Right now the thought of walking around the streets of Dalton seems idyllic. It feels like being in love.

Tudor Square May 2015

My muse is returning. The happy writing. Joyful writing is already beginning to trickle through into my words. I feel less desperate, less motivated by the fear of failure, and more hopeful than ever. I don’t need to keep going down the difficult path alone. I can start climbing out of this pit I’ve been lowering myself into to try and find a safer way up. This is my way out, and I won’t be doing it alone anymore.

My friends are great. Some of the best people I’ve ever met, but we’re all going through our own trials and challenges right now. At least one of us has to take a shortcut out. I’m going to find my star, and when I’m securely anchored, I’m going to help my friends and family up too. Family first though. The clan comes first. I want to make sure my nieces are densely educated and horribly spoiled! I want to take care of all of those who have loved me. Anything you can do to help me achieve this level of success will be rewarded, on a first come, first served basis! 🙂

I want to give my parents enough money to be able to hire servants! My sister needs a personal bodyguard, called Frank. Built like a tank with a heart of pure sunshine and rainbows. My nieces will be the world’s first it-girl academics, adored the worlds over for their intelligence and adorable cuteness! My Grandparents will having anything they could ever want. I hope. All of this will be made much easier by living among them.

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Just a few more days to wait. I want to be sure I have more than enough money for the ticket home. I can’t leave this to chance. If the only ticket available is for $2000 and I have to ride strapped on the roof rack with an oxygen tank, I have to be able to take it!

Take a look at the other articles under the “Liquidation Sale!” topic, see if there’s anything you want to buy, or just donate via paypal. Help me go home. Please.

Okay, so there’s now there are two articles in which I beg. Sorry. It’ll be worth it. I promise.

 

 

Time to Think like an Entrepreneur (Updated!)

I’m writing two articles tonight. If you’re more interested in following on my train of thought regard the Church of Daemonism story idea, then go check out “Just a Rat in a Cage“. If however you’d like to hear what I have to say on the subject of entrepreneurship, then please read on.

Those of you who’ve been keeping up may already know that I’m struggling a little financially. I have no choices left but to succeed, or pack it all up and go back to England where my Family will make sure I get back on my feet. I have to go big or go home. I am tempted to go home, after all I’d still be able to write. Not because I feel I have too, but just because I want to. I fear though that way lies mediocrity and regret. If I’m taken care of, I may lose my edge, my hunger. I could just relax in the warm comforting cocoon of my family’s love, and put my pen down. It’s tempting, and safe. I don’t want to be safe though. I want to be great.

I’ve wanted fame and glory for as long as I remember. As a child I imagined myself a great hero, a famous singer, a cartoonist, or even a religious leader. Each of these dreams faded somewhat as I realised they weren’t my true calling. Hero was the first to go, heroes don’t get teased at school. Heroes are the ones everyone loves. The religious leader one fizzled dramatically, but my Dad has that one covered. I couldn’t draw a character the same way twice, and I stopped singing altogether because the woman I had married didn’t like my voice.

As soon as the internet became available to me I wanted a website. I didn’t know what for though. I tried and failed many times to launch myself into the infinite sea of cyberspace. Often this was inspired by books I had been reading about starting a small business, coaching, self-development, marketing or abundance. I read voraciously trying to find the secret, learn what I was that I was supposed to do. I even started a small business with my former wife, called Purple Phoenix Tarot. It flopped. Not only because she didn’t trust my lead generation and marketing techniques, but because my ‘psychic’ would back out of appointments with clients at the last minute, and the few clients we did have rarely, if ever, came back.

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This time I am both manager and talent, and I will not tolerate any diva-ness from myself. I believe I have found what it was that I wanted to do all along. All the plans I wrote, the characters I created for my cartoons, the crazy gadget designs I doodled when I thought I was going to be an inventor, the backstories I create for the hobby games I play, the books I read looking for the answer, all of it lead to something though natural and enjoyable to me that I didn’t even think about it. Writing.

I’ve read many times that you should do what you love, and you’ll never have to work for a living. I believe that idea may actually be possible, if I approach this using what I’ve learned when trying to better myself. If I apply the lessons of entrepreneurship, self-motivation, leadership, time-management, social media marketing and communication, I really could pull this off. I’m feeling oddly grateful for the difficulties I’ve faced, and the time it’s taken for me to understand what it is I truly want to do. I wasn’t ready, until I had all the pieces. Now I can see the picture and I’m determined to make it a reality.

I’m working on two books right now. A sci-fi story that may become a trilogy, if I feel happy with the pacing, and a fantasy that began as a text based role-playing game I run in a Facebook group. The fantasy is called “The City of Gate: Chronicles“, and it’s basically a retelling, from the beginning, of the game “The City of Gate” that is still ongoing. “Chronicles” because it literally chronicles the adventures that took place in the City of Gate. The city sits on the doorstep of a great fortified gate leading to a paradise. The city’s population were pilgrims and last chancers from all over the known world. They came you the gate to beg to pass through and were turned away. Those that had nowhere else to go made their home right there. There are dragons, wizards, vampires, goblins and dark shadow creatures. It’s a lot of fun.

Dragon attacking City

The Sci-Fi has had a few names. It combines ideas from other stories that didn’t work until I melded them together. The first idea was to follow the story of a sentient ship with no crew, alien in origin, travelling from system to system, collecting resources to maintain itself and keep itself moving, making odd observations on the way. This story was just called “The Ship” and I had sketches of alien plants and animals the ship could come across. The second I remember coming to me as I sat an airport waiting for a flight, thinking it would be cool if the Gates you go through at airports led you through a wormhole to your destination. It occurred to me though that each gate would have to be paired via quantum entanglement with another gate elsewhere. They could never be turned off, or you would have to bring them back together and re-entangle them. I imagined that it would be disastrous should the gateways interfered with one another. I decided that the technology would probably be used instead for space exploration. A spacecraft tethered to earth with a gateway, travelling slowly through space gathering data. Astronaut would be a 9 to 5 job, able to come home for lunch and at the end of your shift. So naturally I called that story idea “9 to 5 Spaceman”!

Another story idea I had, called “The Avalon System” focused on what the world would be like if everyone wore an augmented reality interface, like Google Glass or Shima. I wrote up a quick little scene in a bar between two Avalon users. One picks a fight and challenges the other to a battle. They each choose their favorite gaming avatar, modified with in-app purchases, and proceed to play an augmented reality duel. Originally I have the hero chose a nimble wood elf, while oafish challenger chooses the guise of heavily armed and armored power-armoured cyborg super-soldier. The elfs speed allows him to dodge the tank’s barrage of bullets and slice out primary power lines in no time at all. In the final version of the story, currently being nicknamed “Hermes 925“, the hero is wearing the weaponized armor, and his workplace nemesis publically embarrassed the man by using a naked-but-for-warpaint elf to win the game.

I have a number of other projects on the backburner. I had been working on a self-help book called “Levelling Up” that I may go back to once this experience gives me something personal to add depth and meaning to the catchy phrasing. I also had another fantasy idea called “The War on Magic“, in which a dragon appearing in an American city incites a new wave of terrorism paranoia and resulting in our reality going to war with a parallel magical world. There’s also the aforementioned “Church of Daemonism” idea that would have a sort of Supernatural/Constantine feel to it.

This is clearly a method of self-promotion, and I hope as fellow entrepreneurs, leaders and marketers you can appreciate it. If I’m making a rookie mistake, I’d appreciate your advice. If you’re interested in sponsoring any of the projects mentioned, one of the other articles on my blog, or have something else in mind, please contact me so we can discuss what I’ll need to make that happen. If I’m writing I’m happy, what can I write for you?

Thank you for your valued attention.

Update: I just sent this tweet to Endever publishing to pitch Hermes 925. Wish me luck!

 

The one where I beg!

Today I was informed that one of the credit card companies I owe money to has begun garnishing my wages. I’ve recently had to accept a bailout from my parents when I didn’t have enough money for rent, so they are exempt from this plea now. Hear that family? No more helping! You’re banned! This is for everyone else. Particularly if you happen to be somewhat wealthy.

Money is already tight, and it’s going to be a harder struggle going forward, but it’ll be an interesting experience that I will no doubt survive and be stronger for. I’ve already applied for a second job, and I enter contests like this when I find them. However, I would much rather avoid the struggle and panic, and live at least in comfort if not style. Writing for the joy of it, instead of being motivated largely by the need to find additional sources of income. I already work 40 hours or more per week, with bonus potential. I’ve experienced enough management to know that I do not want to climb the corporate ladder.

10636632_444541229083752_2184904784765327131_oGiven the choice I’d be considered an entrepreneur, but my product is my words. Something in a marketing role has appealed to me. I know that, no matter what, I’ll have to compromise my own writing style to appeal to the tastes of whomever my new patron might be. I’ll do it, and here are my conditions. I want to be divorced, so does she. I want my debts paid. I want myself, and my family and friends, to be able to live comfortably, with occasional expressions of expensive fun. I’d settle for us each getting $5k per month.

If you’re a would-be patron, employer or sugar-momma, read my work, and see for yourself if I’m worth it. I want you to like the way I write. I want to continue to like what I write for you. I do like what I write. I love the worlds I create, so if you don’t, then you’d be better investing your money and time elsewhere. I want you to love me like I’m the best thing ever, and pay me accordingly. I will of course listen to reason.

If you are not wealthy beyond reason, or someone with access to corporate money, you can help me by sharing my work, helping me spread the word. If you feel comfortable helping financially without breaking your own budget, then please do. Most of you reading this are friends of mine already, and you do so much for me that I couldn’t ask for more. If you happens to have any rich friends though, please tell them you know a writer looking for a patron, and send them to this blog. Maybe I should post an ad on Craigslist?

Desperate Author seeks Wealthy Patron. I’ll tell you a story of adventure and glory starring you. I want $5k per month, each, for me and my family. Come see if I’m worth it at antonymcopeland.wordpress.com

What do you think?

Thank you all so much.