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Messages - tebakutis

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1
Links, Competitions and 'Stuff' / Splitting Arrows (A Glyphbinder Prequel)
« on: February 12, 2019, 03:37:00 PM »
Some of you may remember I announced my short story, Splitting Arrrows, won 1st place in the 2018 Farpoint Convention Writer's Contest. It was printed in their 2019 program book this past weekend, and I've decided to throw it up online for all. So, if you're interested in reading a (short) fantasy short story, you can find it here!

https://talesofthefive.wordpress.com/2019/02/11/splitting-arrows-a-glyphbinder-prequel/

2
General Discussion / Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« on: February 07, 2019, 09:14:51 PM »
This is just the start, I guess. It's nice how they looked the wrong way when he was a racist, homophobic asshole but once he takes $400 out of their pocket they scream murder.

Yup. The only thing that will snap them out of their blind devotion to Trump is when he starts directly hurting them, both financially and otherwise. I have no sympathy for these people, as they were 100% fine with him hurting anyone who was not them (and even over a thousand innocent children) until they personally were affected. But it's reassuring to see his blind cult members *finally* starting to turn on him, and I think it's why McConnell will dump him before 2020.

The tax plan that screwed these people was actually McConnell, not Trump - Trump simply rubber stamped it into law because he knew he'd benefit - but I'm certain McConnell will have no problem making these people THINK it was Trump, and will easily get their votes again in 2020 by lying and saying he never supported the bill he passed.

3
This was interesting:

https://www.elderscrollsonline.com/en-us/news/post/55715

It's about how elder scrolls lore was actually community built

This. Lawrence is an awesome guy, and I thought this was a great way to say goodbye before traveling across the sea.

4
General Discussion / Re: Politics and other ailments of the real world
« on: February 06, 2019, 10:28:27 PM »
In a bit of good news from the blight that is US politics, the Democrats taking back the House is starting to bear fruit. Since 2016 Republicans have blocked every single avenue into investigating the rampant corruption of Trump and his many cronies. They can no longer do that. This article on CNN lays out just how dramatically tides have shifted.

https://www.cnn.com/2019/02/06/politics/house-intelligence-transcripts-mueller/index.html

My prediction: Trump is out before the end of 2019 (if the Mueller report doesn't finish him, the investigations that the GOP can no longer block will) and McConnell/the GOP will claim they were against him all along, and lay the blame for every evil, reprehensible action they have championed purely at Trump's feet. The GOP will then, of course, say the biggest threat is "Democratic socialists!" (and every way they screwed their voters was all Trump, not them) and tell their brainwashed base voting Republican again is the only way to stop it.

And, I suspect, that brainwashed base will buy it hook, line, and sinker. We'll just have to hope the energy we had in 2018 carries over to 2020.

I am steadily feeling more confident we will finally get rid of Trump, though the huge amount of damage he (and the Republicans who used him) have done to our democracy and our most vulnerable will persist for decades, if not longer. As far as the thousands of innocent children Trump ordered abducted (and is now refusing to reunite with their parents because it's "too hard") ... they will live with the trauma of his actions for the rest of their lives.

5
Since I'm boosting books I loved today, I thought I'd go ahead and post my review of The City Stained Red by Sam Sykes for those who might be interested. Seriously, it's a damn good book (and the rest are great as well).

http://fantasy-hive.co.uk/2019/01/the-city-stained-red-by-sam-sykes-book-review/

6
Fantasy Book & Author Discussion / Re: What are you currently reading?
« on: February 05, 2019, 08:10:22 PM »
Going to add one more link since I'm boosting Skyfarer.

If you're curious what the world is like (it has sleek cool airships, floating islands, and badass magical knight military contractors) you can't go wrong with the intro to FF 12. Honestly, I feel like this could be a trailer for a Skyfarer movie.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dpl7P9-B1Ho

7
Started watching a few episodes of Into the Badlands season 1. If you liked an action, fantasy, dystopian-ish series with loads of kungfu action but without much plot, this is totally spot on.

I really enjoyed the first season. I wanted to watch the second, too, but stopped maybe halfway through? I think it was a mix of not having time for TV (was writing AND doing VR at the time) and also not being super intrigued by the plot, despite the incredibly well done action scenes and my like for the cast. Maybe I'll get back to it one day.

I will say that the Widow's fight scene in the first few eps remains one of my favorites. The sad thing is, I don't remember her ever again being quite that much of a badass.

8
Fantasy Book & Author Discussion / Re: The Painted Man / The Warded Man
« on: February 05, 2019, 08:05:38 PM »
So yeah, I'm in the camp that, were I Brett's editor, I'd have told him to scrap the entire Leesha story arc. Literally the entire thing. Even beyond 'that scene' at the end, I found nothing redeemable in it, so I'm curious what those who loved her up until the end saw that I missed. A synopsis of Leesha's story for me went as thus:
- 13 year old girl procrastinates that she hasn't 'bloodied the sheets' yet and can't have sex with her husband to be who is so big and brave and handsome.
- girl is hounded by husband to be for sex, and almost goes through with it, but decides to wait because mum banging her boyfriends dad in the next room is distracting....
(snipped rest)

Holy cow that sounds horrible. Like, that is not something I'd write or want to read. The crazy thing is I remember reading The Warded Man (the first book, I think?) and don't recall this sticking out as badly as it is described here (I didn't like it enough to read the sequel). But laid out as you have, it's not an arc I'd want to read in any book.

9
Fantasy Book & Author Discussion / Re: What are you currently reading?
« on: February 05, 2019, 01:09:44 AM »
I need to read the sequel. I really enjoyed the first one. It kind of felt like reading Final Fantasy XII, and that's not a bad thing.

Absolutely! The FF 12 vibe (and for that matter, the FF IV vibe) was incredibly strong with that book. If I had to describe it I'd definitely go with Final Fantasy 12 meets Firefly.

The other thing I really like is that both Skyfarer and Dragon Road each tell a complete story. No need to tread water or set things up for sequels, though I DO want another book.

10
Fantasy Book & Author Discussion / Re: What did you read in January 2019
« on: February 04, 2019, 07:06:37 PM »
I also got quite into R. S. Belcher. I read the final book of his Golgotha series; Queen of Swords, less weird western than steampunk with added pirates. It was a decent ending to the trilogy, although I would have preferred the original western setting.

Continuing with the urban fantasy thing and Belcher, I also read his dark urban fantasy Nightwise. It's less Harry Dresden and more John Constantine (in fact I kept seeing the MC as John Constantine for all that he looks nothing like the TV version of the character and comes from West Virginia, not London). It was a little dark for my tastes, although I'm reading the sequel and I wasn't keen on the MC's insistence on reminding the audience of what a soulless badass he is.

Oh hooray! I run into R.S. Belcher a couple of times a year (we attend some of the same cons) and I'll be seeing him again at Ravencon in a few months. So I will be sure to let him know he has at least one fan on the F-F forums. :)

11
Writers' Corner / Re: Unreliable narrator
« on: February 04, 2019, 07:01:46 PM »
Mr Robot Season 2 is a great example of an unreliable narrator. I mean season 1 is too but season 2 is extra unreliable.

Oh hell yes. When they first revealed that twist in Season 2, I was pissed. It felt like they wanted to repeat the wham of the unreliable narrator reveal in season 1 (can't do a season without a twist!) and just phoned it in.

After everything involved had time to settle in, however, I found I really, really liked that reveal, especially since I could go back over everything that came before and see how they foreshadowed without giving it away.

Still need to see Mr. Robot Season 3. Hopefully it goes free on Amazon some time soon.

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Fantasy Book & Author Discussion / Re: What are you currently reading?
« on: February 04, 2019, 06:58:19 PM »
I started Skyfarer by Joseph Brassey over the weekend!

YES! I promote Brassey's books whenever I can. I adored Skyfarer and it's sequel, Dragon Road. Hoping you dig them as much as I did. :)

13

Sorry to doublepost (and I hate to distract from the fb stuff) but this expose on former NSA American hacker mercenaries is just crazy

https://uk.reuters.com/article/uk-usa-spying-raven-specialreport-idUKKCN1PO1A6

Wow, that is a scary article. And it's amazing how the hacker (Stroud) keeps talking about how she was doing "good work" despite helping put a human rights activist in solitary confinement for 10 years (solitary confinement is probably the worst thing you can do to a prisoner short of actively torturing them every day). Tragic.

It's also typical that she had no problem spying on all these innocent foreign nationals, but the moment she starts being asked to target Americans she's like "Oh no, I won't cross that line! I'm a good intelligence officer!"

I suppose when you're disconnected from the results of your actions enough, you can convince yourself of anything.

14
Haha, it's funny that many dystopian scifi stories always have a giant corporation as the big bad, but rarely show what happens when two giant corporations fight EACH OTHER.

Behold, Apple and Facebook having an argument.

https://gizmodo.com/facebook-broke-apples-rules-and-now-its-employee-only-i-1832198624

15
Writers' Corner / Re: Making villains pathetic
« on: January 28, 2019, 06:51:22 AM »
I'd like to hear some thoughts on this. What do we think of villains who aren't fun, just loathsome? Clarence Boddicker, the Scorpio Killer and Commodus, rather than Hannibal Lecter, the Joker and Hans Gruber?

For me, what's important in villain is competence. If a villain is competent, then they're a threat, and that's really all you need to give your protagonists a challenge. Everything else is up for debate.

As a counterpoint, incompetent villains frustrate me and can cause me to not enjoy a story at all. They really only have a place in children's entertainment (Cobra Commander, anyone?)

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