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Novella Coming Spring 2013: The Woman

March 26, 2013 Author: Anthony Pacheco Category: The Craft  0 Comments

Because Deep Mountain Studios is as crazy as I am (snicker), my mostly finished novella The Woman will become really super-duper finished and released this spring (ish).

The Woman is a military science fiction novella featuring Arune, a sentient warship, and one Lt. Lexus, an infamous soldier in a war that seemingly will not end. Arune and Lexus are, of course, in Armageddon’s Princess, book one of, my Lexus Toulouse mysteries, but The Woman is told from Arune’s point of view.

The Woman will be a Kindle-only release, and even though it will go through a professional editing cycle and a fancy cover, those crazy dudes at Deep Mountain studios tell me it will be free.

Speaking of the fancy cover, here’s the cover all finished and waiting for the final text interior. It’s by Duncan Long.

The Woman

Isn’t this cover awesome? As sci-fi covers go, it’s enticing and artistic. Not only that, that’s exactly how I pictured soldier Lexus. What’s been on the book covers thus far is Lexus in her Princess body.

If you’re a fan of high tech military sci-fi, The Woman is for you. I had many requests for this story, so, my fans, here you go.

Goodreads Giveaway Ended

March 22, 2013 Author: Anthony Pacheco Category: Awesomesauce, The Craft  0 Comments

The first giveaway for Armageddon’s Princess is over. 893 (!) people entered the 40 book giveaway. W O W !

Deep Mountain Studios will print out the mailing labels today and some of the books may even go out in the post this afternoon. Once mailed, it usually takes 3 to 10 days for a book rate package to arrive via USPS.

I love Goodreads and sending these books out makes our day. Goodreads does many things like organize your library and keep track of books you’ve read. One of the things it does well is connecting readers who like to read (and buy) to writers who like to publish (and sell). I love seeing what other people read and review. I’ve found some really super awesome books and people on Goodreads.

Click on the button to go to Goodreads!

Click for Goodreads

Bunny McBoobs, My First Book Failure

March 15, 2013 Author: Anthony Pacheco Category: Characterization, Not Exactly Random, Plot, The Craft  4 Comments

I wrote a book and it was fan-fiction. I wanted to see if I could plot without worrying about characterization.

And I could! I promptly shoved the book under the bed after having one of the kids draw a cover for it. Literally, it’s under the bed.

My second book I completely threw caution to the wind. I wrote a near-future science fiction book about a hot blonde teen girl named Bunny who was a polymath with an eidetic memory, living in a Washington coastal town during an economic downturn. The town had a nasty past, an “interesting” relationship with the local Indian tribe and… a vampiric alien.

It was a weird-ass book, but man, after a revision, I nailed the character voicing and the action scenes. I was fearless and it was way off the rails.

And I realized I could not sell it. This was not a book to launch a writing career as a novelist.

This book was important in that it was the first book I sent to beta readers. It broke through that wall most writers put around themselves when they are in that “this is a bit of crap but its good enough to get feedback.” zone. On one hand, you have to set your fears of your writing chops and worry that you’re using your friends aside and get feedback.

On the other, you need a dose of reality.

After the revisions I realized that I loved that book. I loved it very much. But I didn’t love it enough to sell it. In a sense, I picked the wrong book to write or the right book at the wrong time. This was a failure, in a way. I spent almost a year on it.

Ah, well. If you’re not making mistakes, you’re not learning anything.

But someday I will come back to Bunny. Cause Bunny rules.

Bunny McBoobs

Bunny McBoobs

I Have Never Been Depressed – Empathy and Libertarianism on the Loose

March 14, 2013 Author: Anthony Pacheco Category: Anthonyisms, Not Exactly Random  1 Comment

In my life I have been many things, some bad, hopefully mostly good.

But I have never been depressed. I’ve been sad, lonely, disappointed, hurt and mystified. You name it, I’ve felt it, and those that really know me understand my life wasn’t exactly white-bread middle-class, either.

Part of my dodging the depression bullet is genetics and health. I do not have a condition or chemical imbalance that causes this (clinical) condition.

I’m talking about the other card on the table: depression caused by an external factors colliding with internal philosophy. I see this all the time. So does everyone else.

What is my secret?

Empathy, certainly a little bit, but the root of my non-depression is I am a libertarian. Let’s talk about empathy first.

Empathy and Depression

True empathy is a learned trait. That is, in order for a person to use empathy in a holistic manner, someone must teach that person to do so

However, some people are born with the natural trait of empathy. Spend some time with young children and you can see some of them have an natural affiliation for others outside their sense of self. They have a natural predominant “nurture” (mostly girls) or “protect” (mostly boys) thought processes. Their nature is kindness.

I am one of these people, and also someone taught empathy. I am very thankful for the way I’m wired and what I have learned.

After a certain point, an empathetic person’s sense of self has a natural defense against depression because we have a natural barrier to destructive inward reflection and selfishness. It is difficult for someone to engage in self-destructive behavior if a person understands what causes that in others. It is difficult for that person to engage in selfish behavior, due to empathy for others, as many things cease to become a zero-sum game. To the empath, there are no winners and losers. One person’s success is not your failure.

False-critical reflection and selfishness will cause depression. That is not to say that a depressed person is self-destructive or selfish, but an empathetic person has a built-in defense against depression because they use empathy as a default behavior.

For me, this is part of my lack of depression. The major part of this is I am a libertarian both in words and deeds. People attribute libertarianism often as standing “against” something.

Opposition is symptomatic of an intrinsic philosophy.

Libertarian Philosophy and the Freedom from Depression

Libertarianism is the fundamental belief that all people are good unless a person proves otherwise. There are certain social aspects of this such as trust-verify relationships and game theory. For example, let’s say I’m good friends with Larry and I trust him because he has proven to me he is trustworthy. I tell Larry that I’m going to buy a used car from my neighbor Bob. Larry says whoa there Anthony. Bob is a total scum-bag and will try to cheat you, because he cheated me by selling me a used car, but then put different tires on it before delivery/swapping out other parts/whatever.

Wow, okay. Thanks Larry. I won’t deal with Bob!

That’s one example of the social nature of trust-verify.

Beyond the social aspects of trust-verify lies dealing with people one-on-one. How we deal with people is the core of libertarian philosophy, not what libertarianism is not (“leave me alone, I will leave you alone,” statism is evil, mind-your-own-business, etc.). A person’s relationship with others comes from individual behavior and never from a group.

This simplicity heads right over to the lack of coercion in all things libertarianism. When a person “gives up” the tribalism concept of control = survival, then that person experiences liberation in the true sense of the word. To summarize:

All people are good until proven otherwise –> relationships are always individual –> giving up forced coercion –> results in liberation of the mind.

Hold on, I’m going somewhere here, folks.

Free. Your. Mind.

When you give up trying to control others either through your actions (coercive force) or by proxy (politics), your relationship with other people shifts dramatically. You enter a zen-like state of immediacy that deals with reality as it is, not how you wish it to be. A libertarian mind rebels against collectivism and therefore all the depressing attributes associated with forceful coercion.

For example, Some people are cruel. It is not our nature to be cruel.

Let’s go over some common troupes:

Troupe Collectivism Libertarianism
Racism White men owned slaves, therefore white men are prone to slavery and must make reparations I am not racist. Therefore, I am not guilty of racism. Also, many cultures practiced slavery
Sexism Men rape. Therefore we must presume that there is a rape culture fostered by the male patriarchy I am not a rapist. Therefore, I reject forcing me to pay for the sins of a felon because I did not commit the felony; I also reject the notion of a male patriarchy in today’s society
Discrimination People discriminate, therefore we must pass laws to compensate for the innate discrimination present in society I do not discriminate. Therefore, I judge people on his or hers each merit and reject any coercion to conform to that belief
Homosexuality The Bible/Koran/other religious document says all homos are evil and have cooties Sexual preference is a result of genetic and clinical attributes. Therefore, a homosexual is evil only if he or she display traits such as sociopathy or felonious, violent behavior, which is not specific to sexual orientation
Homosexuality Discrimination against homosexuality occurs therefore we must compensate by teaching children about homosexuality We must respect children’s sexuality and not force one on them
Drugs Drugs are bad for you, therefore we must pass laws protecting people from drugs Drugs don’t kill people. People kill people
Guns Guns kill people, therefore we must ban guns People kill bad people and people kill good people. The bad people killing good people with guns or other objects should be punished accordingly
Wealth We must make sure we take care of poor people I agree, but I do not believe in forcing people to give up their property for any cause
Divorce In order to protect women, we must assume a divorce is “no fault” and have the state administer child support and alimony under the threat of confiscation or incarceration I reject the notion that we should force men, or women, by the state to reallocate their resources when they are not at fault

 

and so on and so forth.

For good or bad, when a person rejects the use of force in almost all things, that person frees his mind from actual guilt and self-destructive thinking. Depression caused by behaviors becomes rare and difficult. Improving the world becomes a matter of helping people around you through your direct actions, not by forcing other people to do as you say. If we control the things we can control and reject controlling the things that are not our purview, what is there to be depressed about?

Nothing. I reject the collectivist/elitist reality and substitute one of my own.

Libertarianism philosophy or lack there of, however, also relates directly to empathy in different ways than we discussed above. And yes, I’m going to go there.

Collectivism and Elitism is a Lack of Empathy and a Lack of Empathy can Cause Depression

Now we come full circle.

Forcing someone who is not guilty of a social ill or crime to pay for another person’s social ill or crime is collectivism. Often times it is also elitist behavior and indicative of a behavioral pathology. A libertarian asserts this is contrary to our natures (control = survival vs. empathy = survival). While it is easier to stick it to the man, figuratively and literally at the ballot box, talk-show or blog post, it’s quite another to do it face-to-face. Not only is this behavior passive-aggressive and therefore subversive and coercive, it is also an appalling lack of empathy. It is punishing the son for the sins of the father. It is, at the very core, an injustice and tyranny of the group unto the individual. It is wrong and morally bankrupt.

This is a lack of empathy. Our natures rebel against such negative behaviors. We become empty, sullen, resentful.

Depressed.

Reject the forces that urge harm by proxy and suffering for those sins ceases.

There is no cure for the human condition. Libertarianism is the embrace of positive social nature and is the triumph and celebration of the individual. What a wonderful, positive place for the mind to be!

Libertarian Man

This is how I start and end my day.

Winners of the Absurdly Easy Kindle Book Launch Contest!

March 09, 2013 Author: Anthony Pacheco Category: The Craft  1 Comment

The unapologetic capitalist pigs at Deep Mountain Studios thanks everyone who entered the Armageddon’s Princess book launch contest. We printed out the entrants to each contest, folded them and put them in a hat, in which they were drawn out after a steak dinner by a nubile (and perky) teenager wearing her varsity cheerleader uniform (true story).

The winners are:

Newsletter winner of a Kindle Paperwhite: Brandie Booth

Comment winner of a Kindle Paperwhite: Neil Hoopman

Blog subscriber winner of a Kindle Fire HD: J Bridget Chicoine

Thank you all for your support and entries!

When Cheerleaders Attack

Absurdly Easy Kindle Contest Ends Tomorrow at 4:00 PM PT!

March 07, 2013 Author: Anthony Pacheco Category: Awesomesauce, The Craft  0 Comments

Update: Contest is closed!

There are THREE Kindles up for grabs in my absurdly easy Kindle Book Launch Contest for Armageddon’s Princess.

One of them the spectacularly nifty Kindle Fire HD. The cool 8.9″ one.

Three Easy Ways to Win a Kindle

1) To enter in the drawing for the Kindle Fire, all you have to do is subscribe to my blog. On the evening of March 8th, we will randomly pick one subscriber. That person will get the Kindle Fire. To subscribe to my blog, go to the left hand side and fill out the form that looks like this:

Blog Subscrbe

Be sure to confirm your subscription in email, or you won’t get added to the list we’re drawing from.

2) To enter the drawing for the one of the Kindle Paperwhites, all you have to do is subscribe to my monthly newsletter by clicking here and filling out the form. On the evening of March 8th, we will randomly pick one subscriber.

Be sure to confirm your subscription in email, or you won’t get added to the list we’re drawing from.

3) To enter the drawing for the other Kindle Paperwhite, all you have to do is comment on the Book Launch Post. On the evening of March 8th, we will randomly pick one commenter.

Note that could take 24 hours for your comment to get out of moderation.  Only one comment will count towards the drawing, multiple comments from the same person only count as one entry. Be sure to comment on the book launch post, not this one.

Launch Contest Q&A:

Q: Where is the contest valid?
A: The Untied States, Canada and the United Kingdom only. Sorry, Amazon limits me on which stores we can buy and ship from.

Q: What versions of the hardware?
A: The 8.9″ HD Fire 16 megs Wi-Fi with special offers, and the Wi-Fi Paperwhites with special offers

Q: Can I enter all three contests?
A: Yes. Please.

Q: How will the drawings be done?
A: Names are printed and cut out, folded, and put in a hat. We’ll hold the hat above someone’s head, and she’ll pick a lucky winner. We will drawn an alternate name, if, when we contact the first person, he/she does not have an US, UK or Canadian shipping address.

Q: What’s to stop me from unsubscribing when the contest is over?
A: Nothing!

Q: What do you blog about?
A: I blog about science fiction, fantasy, books, libertarian topics and announcements.

Q: What will be in the newsletter?
A: Mainly announcements and links to popular posts. Lightweight stuff, but a good way to get info on upcoming projects and releases.

Q: How can you run such a cool contest?
A: Because I’m a capitalist pig!

Kindle Fire HD

Short Book Review: The Wilder Shores Of Marx: Journeys In A Vanishing World by Anthony Daniels

March 05, 2013 Author: Anthony Pacheco Category: The Craft  0 Comments

Click to buy on Amazon.The Wilder Shores Of Marx: Journeys In A Vanishing World by Anthony Daniels

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Now available as a Kindle book, The Wilder Shores Of Marx: Journeys In A Vanishing World is a gripping, disturbing travelog of Dr. Anthony Daniels’s trips to some of the worst places on earth all bound up in one commonality: communism.

In a smooth style with intelligent, descriptive prose, Daniels pens a highly relevant book even when a country he’s visited no longer looks that way today.

Heartbreaking and wistful. This book highlights as no other there is no cure for the human condition.

Highly recommended for people looking for the truth rather than a reinforcement of rose-colored glasses.

Damn, I love my Kindle. Without it, this book would be lost in obscurity, rather than readily available to anybody who wishes to employ critical thinking.

View all my Goodreads reviews.

Click to buy on Amazon.

Click to buy on Amazon.

The Making of Book 2’s Cover

March 04, 2013 Author: Anthony Pacheco Category: Awesomesauce, Setting, The Craft  0 Comments

Armageddon’s Princess is a science fiction murder mystery that stands alone. I spent an enormous amount of time and effort to make sure readers have a complete end-to-end storytelling experience without purchasing the next book in the series.

I gotta tell ya though, book 2, The Wælcyrie Murders,  is kicking some serious ass, and here’s Duncan Long’s blog post on the creation of its awesome cover. Click on the cover to go to Duncan’s place and check it out:

Click here to go to Duncan's post.

Short Book Review: Empire by Michael R. Hicks

March 02, 2013 Author: Anthony Pacheco Category: The Craft  0 Comments

EmpireEmpire by Michael R. Hicks

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Empire is a coming-of-age story told in the backdrop of alien strangeness, war and ultimately love.

I am a total sucker of science fiction come-of-age books. Awesome.

There are a few point-of-view switches that are awkward, but one must read this book to understand just how refreshingly creative it is.

Hicks is a master storyteller, and Reza, the main character, is about as sympathetic and ideal as they come, all in the backdrop of classic science fiction action-focused goodness.

Highly recommend. If you have a Kindle, be sure to snag the omnibus version of all three books.

As an aside, try to spot the underlying gender relations thematic in the series. Brilliant.

View all my reviews on Goodreads.