Just Some Thoughts about Books

Hello there, I have returned.

Another week has passed, and I was able to read a few books. Only six for this week, but I will claim it’s because the Coiling Dragon Saga books are a bit longer than the others I usually read. However, I finished the series, and can say it was pretty good, if a little awkward.

The strangeness I would say comes from it being translated from another language, but what makes it a little unpleasant is the way women are treated. While there are relationships between men and women, claims of love and the like, women are almost treated like property. They can become powerful “Cultivators” as well, however if they are in a relationship they are generally seen as subservient to their partner. I’m not a fan of this, but perhaps others will just see it as a cultural difference. Besides such unpleasantness the books are well crafted, and the ending is satisfying.

As I’ve said before I enjoy reading a book that deals with power growth, though I mostly enjoy the beginning rather than the end of the journey. Mostly because when you get too powerful it takes a bit of the excitement away, especially when challenges can seem forced at that point. However the series never felt that way to me, as each confrontation was reasonable to the world. I won’t spoil the ending, as I think it’s at least worth a read, but what you are left with is an ending that fits exactly into the type of story these books were going for.

Another author I’d like to talk about, one that isn’t in this same sub-genre, is William D. Arand and his more explicit alternative pen name Randi Darren. All his books are well written, and I’ve read all of them, but what makes them more interesting beyond being fun is that they all are in the same universe. While things take place in different worlds or the like, you can expect to see someone from another of his series pop up randomly. It reminds me of how Heinlein’s books at the end all came together to form one universe, or multi-verse. While his books might not be for everyone, they are in the harem-lit genre and can be explicitly erotic, they at least are a fascinating look into how you can write several series in different worlds and yet somehow make them all apart of a larger story.

Other than this, I’ve not done too much else this last week. I’m still going through the current book I’m writing, trying to fix the narrative a bit. I like what I have, but sometimes I feel like scrapping it all and starting all over. Not because it’s necessarily bad or anything, but I keep getting flashes of ideas. Thoughts about how else I’d like to tell the story, and concerns about the personalities of the characters I have being too similar. I’ve two that while not exactly the same, might as well be with the way they talk to each other. Luckily I have a fun one that I’ve thrown into the mix, but she isn’t always around. I think I’ll have to work on the protagonist a bit, and perhaps age him up. Thirteen and introverted might not be exactly the best idea for him. I suppose I’ll decide when I get to the part I thought needed fleshing out. I’ve mostly gone back to make sure the previous chapters line up with the changes I was thinking of. So far I’ve not had to do too much, but it still takes time. Ah well.

Anyway, I think I’ll leave it at that this time. I hope you all have a great week.

You Must Be Drunk link to the Amazon store here https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07X8KH6WM

TTFN

What I’ve published

Walk On

Walk On Cover

click here for a link to the book

Outsider Trilogy

Outsiders-Book-Cover-RGB-web-safe

Click here for a link to the book

Poetry

poems_front2

Link to my author page on Amazon – http://www.amazon.com/Steven-Oaks/e/B00MEGSEZ6

Or you can help me out on Patreon. Again, thank you. https://www.patreon.com/StevenOaks

Update: You Must Be Drunk is published. Find it here. https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07X8KH6WM. And I’m 57% into the new novel’s first draft. Doing a bit of pre-editing in the book right now.

Steven Oaks

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The Coiling Dragon Series

Hello. How are you? I’m fine. Oh, so yes, I’m here to write yet another blog post so let’s begin.

Another week has passed, and I’ve read a few more books. I’d have read more, but each book in this poorly translated Chinese series are fairly long. I think it’s mostly because they repeat things rather often, for unknown reasons. I’ve really no grasp of the original language, so I can’t tell for sure if this is something common for them, yet it is apparent that pronouns aren’t really a thing. Meaning they tend to repeat an entire title of a person or place each time they are mentioned.

Another thing I’ve noticed that irritates me slightly is that the way they break things into chapters is very different than I’m used to. Almost in the middle of a thought they’ll randomly start a new chapter. Two people will be talking, and all of a sudden in the middle of their conversation it becomes another chapter. It makes it hard to find a stopping point for reading, and lately I just try to find my own break.

At times I wonder why I continue to read, and yet I find it fascinating. It can be a little hard to follow at times, but I can’t stop. I’m in the middle of the sixth book now, and I figure I might as well finish it. Of course I’ve read other books that have been translated from Chinese, but they didn’t seem to have this problem. Perhaps this is due to the person(s) behind the translation. Again, to my eyes, I think they are just using software instead of relying on a person who understands both languages for this translation leading to the awkward way things are worded. And yet, I’m coming to think of this series fondly.

I enjoy reading stories that talk about growth, either in skill or power, and this one certainly handles it fairly well. The issue I tend to have with other series happens when an individual becomes so powerful that there are no further threats, and yet they continue. Or the threats they give seem artificial. However the way this book continues, even after reaching the heights of power, the protagonist still has challenges they have to face. And these challenges don’t seem forced, it’s just they become more aware of the wider world and the powers that reside there that are hidden from the weaker people he came from. If it weren’t for the clumsy way it’s written I’d proclaim it a great series, but as it is I can only call it a fascinating challenge to read, even with the interesting things they talk about.

So as you can tell this series must have something to it as this is yet the second week I’ve talked about it. Though before it was mostly about the genre it comes from. I do enjoy the genre, but now the thing that is so charming is the way it’s written. I often bring up the little awkward moments with Samantha. I’m sure she’s tired of hearing about it, but I can’t stop. It’s so weird. And even if it’s not a great series I’m getting something out of it. Perhaps if you are into wuxia and want to read a blundering example of poor translation(my guess) give the Coiling Dragon Series by Wo Chi XiHong Shi a read.

Anyway, I’ll leave you here for now. I hope you all have a great week.

You Must Be Drunk link to the Amazon store here https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07X8KH6WM

TTFN

What I’ve published

Walk On

Walk On Cover

click here for a link to the book

Outsider Trilogy

Outsiders-Book-Cover-RGB-web-safe

Click here for a link to the book

Poetry

poems_front2

Link to my author page on Amazon – http://www.amazon.com/Steven-Oaks/e/B00MEGSEZ6

Or you can help me out on Patreon. Again, thank you. https://www.patreon.com/StevenOaks

Update: You Must Be Drunk is published. Find it here. https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07X8KH6WM. And I’m 57% into the new novel’s first draft. Doing a bit of pre-editing in the book right now.

Steven Oaks

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Wuxia-Lit

Greetings to you all. Again I return to write a post.

So, another week passes, and here I am at a loss as what to speak of. So instead of hunting for ideas I’ll just speak about my week. Heh.

Well, last week on my second scheduled day of writing I woke up with a migraine and felt rather ill. Instead of getting up and beginning to write I lay abed. Hence no additional writing was done. However in the days after I was able to ponder what I felt was missing from my book. It led to several ideas, and instead of simply continuing the story as I’ve usually done, I’ve gone back to make some changes. This will likely be an endeavorer that will take a couple of months to rectify before I can begin to continue the story. However I have high hopes that it will make the book that much more entertaining to read.

Other than that I’ve discovered another genre of books that I enjoy. They are still considered fantasy, but this sub-genre is called Wuxia. Though I’ve heard it also called “Cultivator” by others, the two aren’t mutually exclusive. It takes martial arts and mixes it with fantasy. It tickles the martial artist in me, and my enjoyment of old kung-fu movies. My favorite part of such stories is the same that I was getting from lit-rpg. That being the thrill of a person getting stronger and learning new ways to use that power.

That all being said I’m currently in the third book of a series that was translated from Chinese. Poorly. It’s simply awful how badly it’s written. To me it’s like someone used Google-translate or something and just published it. Even through all the horrible grammar and constant silly use of words I’m still having a good time. Weirdly, it’s really helping me discover what I enjoy about this genre. I’ll likely continue, even if I think it’s so poorly written. I hope it’s not as terrible in its original language. In the end it’s like enjoying a bad movie. Sure it’s terrible, but it’s a ton of fun. I honestly can’t give them good reviews given how poorly they’re written, but I can’t stop reading them.

Well, that’s about all I have to say this week. Nothing much else has happened in my life, I’m simply reading more books and trying to get a handle on fixing up my new book before I continue.

Have a great week.

You Must Be Drunk link to the Amazon store here https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07X8KH6WM

TTFN

What I’ve published

Walk On

Walk On Cover

click here for a link to the book

Outsider Trilogy

Outsiders-Book-Cover-RGB-web-safe

Click here for a link to the book

Poetry

poems_front2

Link to my author page on Amazon – http://www.amazon.com/Steven-Oaks/e/B00MEGSEZ6

Or you can help me out on Patreon. Again, thank you. https://www.patreon.com/StevenOaks

Update: You Must Be Drunk is published. Find it here. https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07X8KH6WM. And I’m 57% into the new novel’s first draft. Doing a bit of pre-editing in the book right now.

Steven Oaks

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Feeling Down

Hello there. Here I am with yet another one of my weekly posts.

So, I’m not sure what to talk about, but I’ll try. I’ve been writing this current book for a little while, and while I think there’s some great stuff going on I feel like I’m not doing as well as I did with You Must Be Drunk. I think the real reason is that I’m not having as much fun. There was humor behind even the most serious idea in that book, but currently I’m writing everything straight. I think it might be time to have some fun with it.

A few weeks ago I did write something amusing, to my mind, and it was fun for me. But the next time I wrote I just went back to writing just the story. No flair, no fun, no anything that couldn’t be just the story. Also I think I need to rely on more time skips, instead of writing everything that a person does in a day. Yes it adds a bit more to my word count, heh, but it isn’t necessary. I’ll probably be getting rid of a lot of that when I start editing the draft, but really it’s not important to the story.

I don’t know why I do this. It’s something that we were able to avoid with the last book, and time skips happened more frequently. Meaning you don’t need to hear about every meal, or if you do it doesn’t have to be more than a line or two. I think it’s an issue with the way my mind works, I need to know all the steps, so I write them all.

Sometimes it feels like there are many things I want to say, and I have everything worked out in my head, but when I sit down to write my brain just goes blank. Then I just write random things based upon what I vaguely remember. It’s frustrating. Perhaps I should find a way to write when I have these ideas. I’ve done it before. Mostly I write an email to myself with a scene or idea in the past, but I’ve not done much of that lately.

Maybe I’m just getting bored. Not with the idea of the book, I still very much like it, but with myself. I think I’m rather uninteresting, even if some eventful things have happened in my life. Yet I cannot seem to get worked up about anything. I’ve noted when I’m angry I write better, maybe I should find a way to illicit that emotion before I write. It focuses me.

That’s what I think I’m missing. Emotion. I’ve been able to put a bit of that in the story thus far, but now and again I’m just void of any feeling, which makes the story humdrum. Or maybe that’s just me, and I can’t feel anything at the time. Heh, I guess I’m just devoid of much feeling most of the time. Or perhaps I’m just down right now. It’s hard to tell. When I’m down I tend to forget how I feel at other times, nor can I really read what I’ve written as anything other than bland. I’m sure the anniversary of my son’s death isn’t helping me.

Sorry that this week’s post is not a happy thing. Rambling about my problems helps me a bit, and maybe it’ll help others. I’m doubtful, but hopeful.

Anyway, I’ll leave you here. I hope you all have a great week, and remember to check out my latest book I wrote with my wife.

You Must Be Drunk link to the Amazon store here https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07X8KH6WM

TTFN

What I’ve published

Walk On

Walk On Cover

click here for a link to the book

Outsider Trilogy

Outsiders-Book-Cover-RGB-web-safe

Click here for a link to the book

Poetry

poems_front2

Link to my author page on Amazon – http://www.amazon.com/Steven-Oaks/e/B00MEGSEZ6

Or you can help me out on Patreon. Again, thank you. https://www.patreon.com/StevenOaks

Update: You Must Be Drunk is published. Find it here. https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07X8KH6WM. And I’m 57% into the new novel’s first draft.

Steven Oaks

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D&D again

Hello to all of you. I’ve returned, as is made plain by this post.

So what have I been up to this week? Well I attended another session of D&D. Fun was had, but I do think my character suffered greatly, and may have become a bit unhinged.

So after gathering a few supplies from the town, my little gnome borrowed a crossbow from the Firbolg. Now the group set out to hunt goblins in a cave, in the hopes that they could clear it out.

After a short ride on a wagon that someone was using to transport goods to town and back home, we found the cave. There were several crows eating the corpses scattered about the entrance, and the teifling decided to try to make friends with one. She rolled a natural twenty, and it became her pet. A vanity pet, not something that helps in combat, but it rests either on her shoulder or in her antlers now.

Because my gnome had antagonized the Firbolg, he cast a spell on me. I now glowed, and he picked me up to use me as a lantern. The gnome thought it was funny, so let it happen. He apparently likes being carried. It makes a bit of sense, his legs are too short, and likely gets tired easily trying to keep up with the larger folk in the group.

Of course stepping into the room, while playing a song, goblins spotted him. He tried to persuade them that he was just a lamp, but of course that failed and they shot him a few times with their bow. Since my gnome is the weakest character they chased after him, even as the others tried to guard me. I healed myself a bit, and the elf, firbolg, and teifling all set about destroying all the goblins easily. I tried to help, but I failed to do any damage with my crossbow.

Onwards! The elf scouted ahead to look for traps, and we found a number of them. Spikes launched from the ground each time, but since the Firbolg decided to carry the corpses of the goblins he just threw them on top and we were able to get over them without injury.

Soon enough we found another room. This one was filled with goblins and kobolds. Well, not good for me. The goblins of course would attack me first even if there were others in the way since I’m the weakest, and the kobolds would do the same, since they hate gnomes. Yay fun, I’m going to take damage!

Since I’m a bard, I cast inspire. And the others took care of the room, while I attempted to use my crossbow again. Luckily, after a kobold was already weakened by someones attack, I was able to kill it. Everyone else did huge damage, good rolls, while I ran away until I couldn’t be hit again. I’m not built to tank.

After the fight, my gnome decided he’d leave, but wound up being too afraid to go on his own. Since the others wanted to continue, he was given no choice but to stay. The Firbolg took the corpses and stuffed the stairwell at the end of the room to make sure nothing would attack us from that direction. There was a hole in the middle of the room, so we went back and grabbed a door to place atop it.

Taking a long rest to heal our wounds, we settled about. My gnome was too frightened to lay down by himself, and the tiefling took pity on him and allowed him to sleep in her lap. When waking up I heard what I took to be a voice coming from the hole in the room, and upon inspection we found someone claiming to be a wizard.

The rest of the group decided to get him out, but my gnome was suspicious, and frightened. As he talked, someone asked if he had a spell book. He said yes, and for some reason my gnome decided we needed to get it away from him. Maybe to help them not die, maybe to stop the wizard from attacking them, and so he stalked forward and pulled his dagger. Aiming it at the wizards kidneys he demanded the book. The teifling seeing the situation was about to come to a fight, she grabbed me and pulled me away to try to calm me down. She said I could ride on her shoulders, so I did, but I pulled my crossbow and rolled intimidation and rolled a 19. Thus threatened, he gave me a book, and I gave it to the elf in hopes she might be able to use it. It didn’t give her any further insight. Oh well.

The firbolg lifted the wizard, and we decided to head down the stairs, only to find another room filled with goblins. The wizard seeing he was about to be attacked, as he was being held in front of all of us, cast a spell that caused an illusion of whatever the goblins feared most. They all ran away, though the elf was able to kill one of them.

Letting the wizard go now, the elf was able to charm him enough to get his autograph, and the location of where he would be later.

Noting another door at the end of the room, and after I cast Inspire again, the Firbolg rolled for sneaking, and was able to enter the room unnoticed. Then casting Thunderwave he killed two of the three goblins there. The leader was much weakened and started pleading for his life, offering to work for him. This wasn’t persuasive enough for the group, and he was easily dispatched by the elf.

We gathered and separated the loot, this was it for this little area. We were much richer, though the gnome is now scarred by this adventure. He never wanted to do anything but play music and enjoy his life in taverns. He desperately wants to get out of here and drink something strong.

But that’s were we left off. We killed a bunch of monsters. Intimidated a prisoner, and freaked out the gnome. All in all a fun time. We’ll see if someone can convince the gnome to go out adventuring again.

I’ll say this is how I remember it, but I’m sure I’m missing things that the others in the group remember. But that’s just how it is, we tend to remember things differently, or mostly from our perspective.

Anyway, I’ll leave you here. I hope you all have a great week, and remember to check out my latest book.

You Must Be Drunk link to the Amazon store here https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07X8KH6WM

TTFN

What I’ve published

Walk On

Walk On Cover

click here for a link to the book

Outsider Trilogy

Outsiders-Book-Cover-RGB-web-safe

Click here for a link to the book

Poetry

poems_front2

Link to my author page on Amazon – http://www.amazon.com/Steven-Oaks/e/B00MEGSEZ6

Or you can help me out on Patreon. Again, thank you. https://www.patreon.com/StevenOaks

Update: You Must Be Drunk is publishedFind it here. https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07X8KH6WM. And I’m 55% into the new novel’s first draft.

Steven Oaks

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The Book is Out, and Things I’m Watching

Howdy folks, I’m back.

You Must Be Drunk is published and ready to purchase. I’m happy to see several have already done so, and I look forward to hearing what people think. It’s the best thing I’ve written to date, in my opinion, and also the longest I’ve taken to work on a book. So hopefully it shows and you all enjoy it.

You Must Be Drunk link to the Amazon store here https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07X8KH6WM

So what else is going on with me you might ask? Uh, I dunno. I watched the first couple of episodes of The Dark Crystal. I liked it, but if I were to have a complaint I find it a little slow. Don’t get me wrong it’s entertaining, but I found myself doing other things while I watched. That could just be down to having drank a couple of cups of coffee before hand. That tends to make me a little more irritable and distracted, unless I’m focused on writing.

What I’m really enjoying lately is a couple of anime. They work in tandem in a way, though one really is a weird mix of perviness and inventiveness. Are You Lost is something of a mixed bag. A group of girls are stranded on an island. Partial nudity and perverted shots abound, but that’s not why it’s worth watching. One of the girls is a survivalist, since her father was into it and trained her since she was young. Watching her explain things to the others is what makes it worth your time. I’ve learned several things I wouldn’t have thought of about living off the land.

The other anime that works in tandem with it is Dr. Stone. Our modern world is suddenly swept with a curse, or something, that turns everyone into stone. Thousands of years pass and eventually a few people are freed. The world has changed, of course. One such person freed is a scientific minded young man. He wants to bring our modern conveniences back, and each episode goes into detail about his inventions and the like. It’s quite enjoyable, and I find the episodes go by quickly. Watching both I learn something each time, and interestingly certain things that I learn in one play into what the other does. Such as with lightning rods. I won’t spoil it, but it was fun to see what each one did. I will say watching both has lead to long conversations with Samantha, and we are always excited to watch the next.

I’m of course watching other anime, as is my want, but nothing else is as entertaining. However my reading lust might be overshadowing my enjoyment. Instead of watching several episodes of anime when I get off work I tend to read. It might be why I’m sleeping better, as I can more easily find a stopping point rather than waiting for an episode to end. Of course sleep still isn’t perfect, likely due to the time I am in bed. That being the day time.

I’ve read seven books since last week, and I’m up to 157 books for the year. We’ll see if I make it to 200 by the end. I’m not sure why I’m aiming for it, but it gives me something to work towards. I like giving myself little goals, and this one seems doable. It’s how I get any writing done as well.

Each time I sit down to write I make sure I get my word count for the day, and the book grows. Speaking of which, I’m more than halfway through the first draft. As expected I got discouraged, especially as I compare my own writing with things I read, but as is the case, the next time I sat down to write those worries disappeared and I was able to continue. My advice to writers, or to other creators, don’t give up. Just keep pushing. You may not think it’s perfect, but nothing is. But the more you do something the better you get.

Anyway, I’ll leave you for now. Remember to give You Must Be Drunk a try. I don’t think you’ll be disappointed.

TTFN

What I’ve published

Walk On

Walk On Cover

click here for a link to the book

Outsider Trilogy

Outsiders-Book-Cover-RGB-web-safe

Click here for a link to the book

Poetry

poems_front2

Link to my author page on Amazon – http://www.amazon.com/Steven-Oaks/e/B00MEGSEZ6

Or you can help me out on Patreon. Again, thank you. https://www.patreon.com/StevenOaks

Update: You Must Be Drunk is publishedFind it here. https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07X8KH6WM. And I’m 53% into the new novel’s first draft.

Steven Oaks

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You Must Be Drunk(Published)

Welcome one and all. Today is the day. That’s right, You Must Be Drunk is published.

Well, it’s being processed for publishing. It takes awhile. It’s my fault really that it isn’t exactly available as I write this. I could have started to put it up last night, but I hesitated. I wanted to give Samantha time to put any changes in place, or add things. She didn’t, so I suppose that was just me being hesitant as it’s not just myself who is responsible for this book.

Likely the book will be ready to download in a few hours after I put this blog up, though perhaps if we’re all lucky as soon as I hit publish on this it’ll be available. Wouldn’t that just be my luck, I’m complaining about myself being hesitant, and in the end it isn’t even noticeable to anyone else?

Anyway, here’s the synopsis.

Midgard, a land made by the Norse Gods, filled with legendary heroes and monsters. A realm where the brave can carve their name into the pages of history.

Sig, the wandering drunk, has no such ambitions.

His tale begins in a tavern, as most good stories do. Begging the locals for a drink, he finds himself seated across from a strange, smiling man. He speaks of a wondrous drink, the rainbow mead of the Gods. Enticed by the bounty, Sig undertakes the quest for the perfect brew.

Heading out into the fantastical world of old Norse lore, lacking in supplies, skills, and good sense, he stumbles his way through the realms of Yggdrasil. He’ll drink with fairies, elves, dwarves, magical beasts and Gods along the way, traveling to the end of the universe to find his treasure.

With that, I’ll leave you. Take a look at the book, and if it sounds interesting, give it a read. I’d love to hear your reaction! Have a great week.

Update: the book is out. Find it here. https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07X8KH6WM

TTFN

What I’ve published

Walk On

Walk On Cover

click here for a link to the book

Outsider Trilogy

Outsiders-Book-Cover-RGB-web-safe

Click here for a link to the book

Poetry

poems_front2

Link to my author page on Amazon – http://www.amazon.com/Steven-Oaks/e/B00MEGSEZ6

Link to the Deathship book in the CreateSpace store – https://www.createspace.com/5023771

Or you can help me out on Patreon. Again, thank you. https://www.patreon.com/StevenOaks

Update: You Must Be Drunk is 100% edited, and 100% formatted. The book is finished, and should be available shortly. And I’m 51% into the new novel’s first draft.

Steven Oaks

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You Must Be Drunk Cover

Hello everyone. Gaze upon the glorious cover for the book.

You Must Be Drunk Cover

Okay, now that you’ve done that, perhaps you’ve guessed that the book will be out soon. How soon? I suspect at latest next Tuesday. I say this with the knowledge that it can take some time for Amazon to approve a submission. At latest I think I’ll submit next Monday afternoon. So if you don’t hear from me by then, go ahead and check my author’s page on there and you might see it before I get a notification that we’ve been approved.

It’s been a long journey, and I think well worth the time and effort. I hope you all enjoy the book, I know we do. And I think you might agree that the cover is perfect. Once you read the book you’ll note all the references that are given there. Ah, but heck, I’m just super excited to finally put this out into the world. It’s some of my best work yet, and it’s only enhanced by the tireless effort the co-author put into it. And I think we’ve only grown more excited about writing together again.

Though we have our own books that we are both currently working on, I think it’s only a matter of time before we start our next joint project. Then again, as things stand, whatever book we write on our own will be scrutinized by the other before we publish anything, so it’s not like we’ll ever be without each other. It’s wonderful to have someone to rely on, especially when they know what they’re doing. So thank you Samantha for being with me since the beginning.

With that, I’ll leave you here. I hope you have a wonderful week, and look forward to You Must Be Drunk coming to you soon!

TTFN

What I’ve published

Walk On

Walk On Cover

click here for a link to the book

Outsider Trilogy

Outsiders-Book-Cover-RGB-web-safe

Click here for a link to the book

Poetry

poems_front2

Link to my author page on Amazon – http://www.amazon.com/Steven-Oaks/e/B00MEGSEZ6

Link to the Deathship book in the CreateSpace store – https://www.createspace.com/5023771

Or you can help me out on Patreon. Again, thank you. https://www.patreon.com/StevenOaks

Update: The book is 100% edited, and 99% formatted. The book cover is coming finished. And I’m 49% into the new novel’s first draft.

Steven Oaks

Follow me on the things below.

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Cover, Zim, and Jim

Hello you. It’s yet another week into the year, and things are grand.

So first up, as I think quite a few of you are interested… maybe. The book cover is completed! Now for the hard part… yet another hard part. We need to work on they synopsis. I’ve a few ideas, but I need to iron them out with the co-author. So it looks like we will get this thing out before September rolls around. I’m quite happy with the cover, and I’ll let you all see it before I submit the book for publishing, so stay tuned.

Other than that, what else can I talk about? Oh, I know, we watched the new Zim movie, Enter the Florpus. It was like no time had passed, and it truly stands with the original series. As a long time fan it’s always nice to see something new from Jhonen Vasquez. The animation is better, and only one character design wasn’t quite what we were used to, but it wasn’t distractingly so. It was awesome to see Zim and Dib back up to their old antics, and it was an entertaining watch. Any fan of the show will be pleased with this new offering, however I would say anyone new to the show might not quite get it. If you’ve never seen Zim I highly recommend watching it, but start with the series first before you get to this movie. You won’t be disappointed.

Another thing I did was finish watching the little series by Defunctland(DefunctTV) about Jim Henson. I finished the 6 part series late last night. It of course ended with the death of the creator. A sad but hope filled retrospective. It’s probably why I’ve been so obsessed with the recollection of The Storyteller series recently. I had many a long talk with the co-author about our favorite episodes, and the stories they told. I don’t know why, other than it’s a great story, but the one called The Soldier and Death always stands out to me. Before we watched the Zim movie we watched it along with a friend who had come over. I think it’s safe to say we all enjoyed it. It doesn’t hurt(wink) that John Hurt was the storyteller in the first season.

Otherwise I’ve just been reading and writing. I’m up to 136 books for this year. As to writing, I’m almost to the halfway point in the first draft. It’s coming along nicely, though there are times it gets a little hard to fill in the blanks between story beats. That’s always the case for me though. Guiding these characters to specific points I want them to is like wrangling cats at times. One character in particular seems to just grab on to whoever is around and force them to do what she wants. At least she isn’t always around to do so, otherwise I might not ever get this book done, heh.

Anyway, I shall leave you here today. I hope you all have a great week, and look forward to You Must Be Drunk coming your way soon!

TTFN

What I’ve published

Walk On

Walk On Cover

click here for a link to the book

Outsider Trilogy

Outsiders-Book-Cover-RGB-web-safe

Click here for a link to the book

Poetry

poems_front2

Link to my author page on Amazon – http://www.amazon.com/Steven-Oaks/e/B00MEGSEZ6

Link to the Deathship book in the CreateSpace store – https://www.createspace.com/5023771

Or you can help me out on Patreon. Again, thank you. https://www.patreon.com/StevenOaks

Update: The book is 100% edited, and 99% formatted. The book cover is coming finished. And I’m 47% into the new novel’s first draft.

Steven Oaks

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Shave and a Haircut, DND

Howdy folks. I return.

So first off, just to get it out of the way, I shaved my head. If you don’t care about that sort of thing, go ahead and skip ahead because I’m gonna talk about this for a little bit.

I had long hair. I began growing it out years ago, and after twenty years of having enjoyed such things it is now gone. Had it never grown thin I’d probably just let it keep growing, but age has its price. As is normal for my family, eventually the baldening began to happen. So, not wanting to go for the Benjamin Franklin look, I shaved my head. There is nothing quite like a shorn…. oh wait, no. Um, it feels wonderful. No longer does my hair snag on everything, nor do I have to worry about brushing it out, let alone taking forever to wash and condition. However it does take time to shave. I’m still undecided if I’ll ever let any hair grow out again, but now I look like a rather tall dwarf with my long beard, heh.

The downside is that my head feels cold. Not too much of a problem during summer, but it does make sleeping with the a/c on rather interesting. I tend to pull my head under the covers now, and it tends to help. That and I “think” I’m sleeping better. I still don’t feel rested until I get some coffee into me, but that may just be my addiction to caffeine.

Oh, yeah, and now I have a new habit, I rub my head constantly. I love the way it feels right after shaving. So smooth! Heh, when it comes in a little it also feels nice. Like sand paper against my fingers. I’m convinced I’m sanding down my finger prints doing this, but I can’t help it.

I’m not sure they read this, but I will mention something else. I have a knitted cap that someone made for me years ago. I think I received it for Christmas. I’ve been wearing it every time I write, or when I’m cold. Now it functions as my hair, keeping my head warm. I call it my thinking cap, heh. So a very big thank you to them. I hope it lasts a long time. I’d feel lost without it, as it’s a part of my writing process, and now it replaces my hair, at least around home.

So anyway, I played some more DnD this weekend. Sigh, we got into another fight while trying to rescue a tavern owner’s son. He’d been kidnapped by goblins, and our group attacked. And by our group, I mean everyone but me. I was going to, but I was afraid one of them would turn around and bash my head in.

So, we got to a clearing, and several goblins surrounded the kidnapped dwarf. The Teifling and Elven Wizard went out ahead to look at a boulder that was hanging dangerously over the group. The Firbolg at this time decided he’d cast a spell that made him look like a tall goblin and walked forward to confront the ones holding their hostage. I asked him to wait while I used my disguise kit so I’d look like a goblin as well, but he ignored me. While I applied my make up and outfit, he confronted them. Not knowing how to speak goblin, he acted unintelligent using grunts and dim-witted expressions. They lept at him, attacking the unknown goblin before them. He easily killed two of the three, while the tiefling killed two, and the wizard cast burning hands, as she is wont to do. The ones not killed ran away, but not before pushing the boulder down at the dwarf and firbolg. He picked up the hostage, and ran away, while I took off my disguise, again afraid I might be attacked. Unsure if we were going to be attacked I cast inspire at the Firbolg, and sang “Carry On My Wayward Son” to everyone’s amusement, but to no point, the fight was done.

The party came back together, all the while the dwarf mistook the firbolg as a golem of some type, and me as its master. I went along with it. It became apparent this dwarf was annoying, as he kept asking to join our group, and saying the dumbest things. I decided I’d just play some music to shut him up, and it worked.

Once back in town we delivered him to his father, and were rewarded. The other three decided to turn in the ears they collected for a reward and went to the town hall. I stayed behind to flirt, but once the woman I targeted began to talk I realized how crazy her eyes were, and decided against it and went back to share a drink with the tavern owner.

The other three turned in their ears, got some gold, and were making ready to leave. That is when a man came out and asked them into his office. Trying to be subtle he asked for their help to kill his supervisor. The Tiefling being the good and innocent person she is called out, shouting that the man was trying to kill someone. He made his escape out the window as the guards came rushing towards the group.

They were praised for their loyalty, and were ready to leave. Unfortunately the elven wizard decided she’d try to loot the room of the would-be assassin. While everyone was turned away she re-entered the room, and found a chest. Apparently overcome with greed, or simply wanting to find knowledge about the assassin, she had found a chest and tried to open it. Using a pen she found she attempted to unlock it. It failed spectacularly and loudly exploded alerting everyone to her presence.

Now, in this town there is a rule. The rule is if you break a law you are to be executed. She had been found trying to steal, so she was about to be taken away to prison, and was facing death. This stumped everyone there for quite awhile. They didn’t want to die, so the Firbolg Cleric decided he’d try something, and shouted to the room that she was possessed by a demon, and attacked her with a spell. Eventually causing her to pass out, he then claimed the demon was gone. Now the whole town thinks there are demons running around possessing people.

In the end everyone returned to the tavern for sleep. I noted the passed out Elf, and asked what happened. I was told she was possessed by demons, and remarked I wasn’t surprised. Her use of burning hands for no reason other than to kill things for no reason before obviously not something a person would do if they weren’t possessed. Now only the Firbolg and Elf know she was never possessed. And that was it for the evening. Another fight, and I do nothing but stand in the background, and everyone else does things. Ah well.

And that is it for this time. I hope you all have a great week.

TTFN

What I’ve published

Walk On

Walk On Cover

click here for a link to the book

Outsider Trilogy

Outsiders-Book-Cover-RGB-web-safe

Click here for a link to the book

Poetry

poems_front2

Link to my author page on Amazon – http://www.amazon.com/Steven-Oaks/e/B00MEGSEZ6

Link to the Deathship book in the CreateSpace store – https://www.createspace.com/5023771

Or you can help me out on Patreon. Again, thank you. https://www.patreon.com/StevenOaks

Update: The book is 100% edited, and 99% formatted. The book cover is coming along. And I’m 45% into the new novel’s first draft.

Steven Oaks

Follow me on the things below.

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