Bryce A Beattie's Action & Adventure

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I was just thinking.

Just exactly how much dirt has to be dug up on Clinton and Trump before a majority of Americans vote third party?

re: Pulps and Pixelry

David J. West recently wrote an article called Pulps and Pixelry over at his blog. You might want to read that before this, so you get some kind of context. Anyway, it got me to thinking. What follows is likely to be fairly stream-of-consciousness. Sorry. Someday, I’ll be more focused.

I don’t know about other people, but I can’t remember ever looking at the publisher of a book before I read it. I certainly never had a “I don’t read works by independent, self-published authors” rule. Maybe I’m just morally superior to the rest of the market. I’ve pretty much always read based on personal suggestions, and occasionally national trends like Harry Potter. Also, a story has to be pretty abysmal for me to quit reading in the middle.

I know some people just love love love the feel of books. I get that, and I do like physical books plenty. But when I learned about ebooks, holy crap I was excited. I’ve owned a couple of nooks (tablet and eink versions), an ebookman (old school back-lit lcd. best ergonomic reader ever, but hard to get files onto it), 2 Kindles (currently on a paperwhite) and a couple of tablets. I’ve settled down recently. and have gone down to one eink device and one tablet. But I put all my favorite books into Calibre, where I can easily find anything, and I love it. Also, I don’t have a room like David (see the picture at the top of the linked interview) does in which I can stack hundreds upon thousands of books.

And like I said, I still buy and read based on friends / already-liked-authors recommendations, so the torrent of digital slush out there doesn’t bother me.

You know what bugs, me though, is when the publisher sets the ebook price at or higher than the print version. When I encounter that with a non-fiction book, I’ll often just search the net for a few synopses and call it done.

Speaking of pulps, I have thought about putting together an anthology/starting a magazine/something that is printed in the size/paper of the Farmer’s almanacs. I think it’d be fun. With none of those boring non-fiction articles you see in some mags. Only action adventure stories. I wonder how cheaply those can be made? Doing black and white (or color) interiors on a POD like MagCloud makes a high quality product. However, copies can be cost prohibitive. I did play with that once, though. I want to produce something that could be theoretically handed to a fan with out huge expense.

Of course, I’ll need to get a few fans before that becomes an option. I’d better get writing.

Things my son wants for his 5th birthday.

  1. A real blue sonic screwdriver.
  2. A butler to do his chores.
  3. A monkey.

Dear classified ad responder;

An open letter to everyone who responds to my online classified ad.

Here is how negotiations work with my ad. First, I offer a price for an item. I also provide photos and a description in my ad. Next, you ask any questions you need to determine if you want to buy my item and how much you should pay. Then, you either accept or reject my offer, or you make me a counter offer. Do not just ask how low I’m willing to go. It’s rude. Do not counteroffer less than half of what I have offered. It’s rude. Plus, I’m already giving you a good deal. Trust me, I went and researched what the market value of my item is. Twenty, maybe 30 percent lower is perfectly fine, as long as you can give me a reason. It doesn’t have to be a good reason. We take turns giving counter offers until we reach a place where we either both are satisfied or we decide we cannot reach a consensus.



Send a Secret Message! One-Time Pad Generator for Pen and Paper Encryption.

A pen and paper system for passing encrypted notes. Includes a random one-time pad generator.

How to Self Publish a Book

Off and on for the past several years, I’ve been writing a free book to help authors to self publish a book. I’ve had a version up on a separate blog for a while, but I’ve been finishing it and editing and reformatting and such, and now I’m posting the book on this site. It […]

The final (for now) covers.

Here’s what I’ve ended up with for the two new short story covers. I think I’m happy enough with them now, and I can publish more in the same style so they will look like they kind of belong together. Links go to the stories at Amazon.

Then you can’t vote for her, either.

Politics. If you don’t like them, don’t read this post. I am going to rant for a minute. And let me get one thing out of the way- I am not planning on voting for Trump. I disagree with many of his stated policies. I find his personality grating. Do not mistake what I am […]

Still Fiddling with Covers

Here’s some newer versions of one the covers I’m occasionally working on. I’m not really sure which way to go. In this round I changed the author name to be a little more in line with the whole pulp aesthetic I’ve been playing with. I swear, I’ve probably looked at a thousand pulp covers looking for inspiration. And my goal here is not to really sell more of the short stories that I have already released, but to establish more of a consistent style as I release newer stuff.

cover_test_1 cover_test_2

Quick Question for Authors

Out of curiosity, do you have royalties/etc paid to you directly, or do you have a separate legal entity, like an LLC?

If you get a book contract, do you make it with the LLC or with you personally?


Yay for fiction! In this short piece, a man has a frightening encounter with a pair of bizarre government agents. I’ve been trying to write something every night over the last little while. This idea just popped into my head a few nights ago as I lurked around reddit’s nosleep community. I’ll be cross-posting this […]

Finding Art for New Covers

I decided the covers on my short stories need to change. I’m also planning on self publishing a few more over the next little while. Here are the two specifically that I’d like to replace: What I’d like is a pulpier feel with more genre-appropriate art. Also some sort of attempt at same-ness author branding. […]

Silly Request for Reviews

I’ve been ordering a bunch of art from fiverr to redo some of my short story covers (and get one for the upcoming release.) I’ll talk about that process very soon. Right now I want to tell a different story.

For whatever reason, fiverr decided to love me as a customer and it gave me a $5 credit. There’s not much I need from fiverr that only costs $5, so I browsed around for anything that could be useful to this site or me as a writer. I looked at some of the “shill” reviews that were being offered, but that just made me feel dirty. I checked out the music categories to see if $5 could score me some kind of theme for the blog. (Answer: not really) Finally what I ended up with was the following silly little plea for reviews.

Announcement: Learning (Game) Programming in Scratch

Over the past year and a half, I’ve been volunteering, teaching a programming class at a local elementary school. I’ve been using scratch to teach, as it’s easy to get something fun done fast for the kids. I created a curriculum for the class that mostly consists of video tutorials the kids can follow along […]

It’s my birthday!

It’s my birthday and as such I suppose it might be acceptable for me to mooch for reviews. So if you have ever read something I’ve written, please consider leaving me a review. My Amazon Author Page My Goodreads Author Page My Smashwords Page Me on Barnes and Noble Or maybe like my author page […]

StoryHack Podcast #1: David J. West Interview Play in new window | DownloadSubscribe: iTunes | Android | RSSI’m calling this the StoryHack Podcast, Episode #1. However, don’t hold me to any sort of schedule for releasing more of these. I have no plans for regularity. That being said, it was a lot of fun, and I would like to do more […]

Coming Soon

I just got back from my first ever live author interview. I’ll post the audio in a day or two, as soon as I can listen to it and make a couple of notes. There was a big car wreck on the freeway on my way back. It took 2.5 times as long to get […]

Random Replies

As of late I’ve been “discussing” politics and morality and religion and all sorts of stuff around the internet. Yes, I know that arguing on the internet almost never changes anyone’s mind.  I’ve come to the conclusion I should probably cut back. After all, I want to remain friends with certain people despite our differences of opinion. Still, people are wrong out there and I HAVE TO SAY SOMETHING.

In place of fighting on various threads, I’m going to put some of my responses below, listed without any context. I just need to get this stuff out of my system.

  • Yes he does, and so does every other senator. They all get donations/rewards from companies and special interest groups. All of them on both sides of the political isle. Don’t act like he’s a special case.
  • Who cares?
  • This doesn’t work and I’m not dumb enough to share it or like it thinking it’s going to work. It’s a prank.
  • That headline is phrased as anger-inducing clickbait. It’s not a strong debate point. I mean, if another publication, maybe one like the National Review, printed that story they could have easily re-titled it “GOP Senators vote to not take away citizens’ 5th amendment right to due process.”
  • This news is sickening. I think they should abolish the draft altogether, so that none of my children can ever be forced to kill or be killed at the whim of war-monger politicians.
  • Pledged delegates and superdelagates might be a problem, but it’s one with your chosen party, not the actual election. Electoral college is a separate issue altogether.
  • I’m pretty sure by this point that Bernie Sanders will not be getting the nomination, but I do appreciate your enthusiasm.
  • If you continue to lie to your children like that, they will not believe anything you say when they get older. My kids at know that I claim to be Santa for them. One day they’ll be like, “Man, society lied a lot to me, but my Dad always told the truth. Maybe he was also right about…”
  • It is this exact fear to vote 3rd party (or independent) that keeps the current parties in power. Suck it up and vote for someone else, man.
  • Wait, you disagree with the sentiment that both sides only present skewed and misleading statistics? I can provide you with several more examples, but you obviously have your mind made up. I won’t waste my time. Please, continue your uninformed ranting.

Writing Again & other News

Okay, so I’ve been making an effort  to write every night at least a little. For as much as I enjoy writing, I realized I haven’t been doing much. Now I need to add in edit a little every night, too, so I can get that kids’ book polished up. Also, I’m in a consolidating phase, […]

Just another Million Dollar Idea…

Does anybody else get scam calls from the same place over and over? Even after you tell them to stop calling? It bugs the heck out of me. I wish there was an app that would remember the numbers of those places and not just block them, but play loud, annoying noises over the phone until they hung up. Or maybe a message that said something like “Hi, and welcome to Captain Zeusmonger’s private horoscope hotline. Because Captain Zeusmonger values you as a human being, you will only be charged $39.95 per minute to use this exclusive, powerful, life changing service. Your horoscope today is as follows…”

I’d pay for that app. That is all.

2016 Beattie Family Vacation Report

So, I know nobody cares, but I’ve recently come to the conclusion that I have to occasionally write something for the blog, so here you go. We just got back from a week long trip to the Yellowstone area. It was pretty fun and the kids are finally starting to do the road trip thing […]

The Castle Crumbles

Okay, so I saw the Castle series finale this week. Here are some random thoughts.

  • So, yes, it was apparent that the showrunners honestly believed they’d be renewed, and so they didn’t really prep a “series ending scene.” The scene they tacked on the end had to be something filmed for and cut from a previous episode.
  • I’m always happy to see Major Dad. Even if he turns out to be a bad guy.
  • This last episode had some pretty big logical stretches. Took me right out of the story. Let’s consider the electromagnet. Even if it made sense for him to have one, which is doesn’t, its usage in the show has huge problems. If it’s strong enough to rip a gun from someone’s hands, it would be pulling all sorts of crap to it. Button and zippers would distort clothing, watches would lift hands, random bits of metallic trash would zoom upward, etc. And Castle would have felt a pull long before he got close enough to rip the gun from his grasp.
  • Also, what was the creepy bad guy doing in the cab before Castle walked out? How could he possibly time that abduction?
  • Last season, when Stana Katic was thinking of leaving the show (holding out for more money?) fans went ballistic on her. Now, suddenly she’s the victim of a cruel Nathan Fillion plot. I’ll bet when they announced she wouldn’t be back for “budgetary reasons” she was probably asking for even more money…
  • I’m kind of bummed that Castle’s character went from charming, competent, funny, ruggedly handsome, helpful guy in the early seasons to mega buffoon caricature by the end. Well, buffoon caricature with occasional super intense angry moments.
  • Caleb showing back up to shoot them? That was stupid. He had no reasonable motivation to do so- only purpose I can conceive is to have a forced surprise kick-in-the-groin cliffhanger.
  • I don’t know why nobody likes the Haley character. My only qualm is the tacked on hacking superpower she was granted after introduction. Maybe she was bitten by a radioactive c compiler or something. Other than that, I thought she was interesting.
  • For the record, I totally would have watched a continued series without Kate Beckett. And I probably wouldn’t have even missed her. So there.

Re: Hugo Nominations

I think the yearly kerfluffle over the Hugos is getting quite ridiculous. Both sides are basically being jerks to each other. “The people you thought should be nominated are stupid and stop the people I think should be nominated!” Both parties scream. They simply egg each other on and dare the other side to take more and more drastic matters. Authors on both sides write books upon books worth of snide comments and proof of their superiority. One side simply favors self important-intellectual-newspeak and the other crass verbal bludgeoning. It’s all very fun to watch, but not very productive.

That being said, I think there should be a new award where instead of a crappy statue the winner is given an actual puppy.

An Arborist Daydream

Just over a year ago My wife and I took our kids on a road trip to the redwoods in northern California. It was amazing. I loved being there and I was blown away by the sheer grandeur of those trees. I plan on going again.

Several months later, I came across this article about growing a forest rapidly.

Maybe you can already see where this is going.

At some point over the last little while I wondered if I could somehow mix the ideas in the article to make rapid redwood forests.

In fact I have this secret dream of planting such a patch somewhere hidden, but not too difficult to get to. I’d use the three types of redwoods, douglas firs, maybe lodgepole pines, heck I could throw in some quaking aspens for color in the fall. Pretty much any tree I would find amusing. But the primary goal would be to establish redwoods.

Now, I’ve read that redwoods can grow 6-10 feet per year. That means before I shuffle off this mortal coil I could revisit my secret forest and there would be some very tall trees. They wouldn’t be truly huge in diameter yet, but that’s okay. In a couple of hundred years, someone else will discover my forest and be amazed.

As I’ve batted this idea around in my head, I’ve had fun imagining many “what if”s. After all, if I love the redwoods, then everybody else would, too, right? And not everybody lives close enough to road trip it to northern California. So they should be planted everywhere.

What if somebody planted these forests in a bunch of yards in abandoned neighborhoods?

What if several people planted these tomorrow?

What if a large conservationist movement did it?

How many years would it take before the trees got big enough for anyone to really notice?

I haven’t exactly done any research for this, so it’s mostly a pleasant daydream. Redwoods might not be suited for places I want them (Yellowstone, the park down the street from my house, etc…) And I have this nagging fear that maybe introducing such massive non-native species somewhere would cause ecological mayhem.

Still, if here in 14 years you are hiking about and you come across a grove of redwoods where none should be, go ahead and think of me. Just don’t tell the government about my plan. I don’t want to get in trouble.

P.S. When I lived in Brazil, I had the chance to see a few of what I believe were Kapok Trees, which are also pretty cool. Feel free to plant some of those, too.

Chatting with Maria Lynch

Today’s author interview is with Maria Lynch, author of Beneath the African Sun. What are three things everyone should know about you? I love reading fiction and non-fiction books that interest me; fiction—historical fiction, detective mystery and some popular fiction. Non-fiction can vary from philosophy to current trends in leadership, addressing social justice issues and […]