A Rant; Or Rather, an Angry Diatribe about GoT

Okay, as a writer, I understand that there are scenes that move along plot and are sometimes hard to write and can be quite visceral to readers. Sometimes, that is the point of writing those scenes. Hell, I was asked if I’m just killing off gay characters because they’re gay (don’t worry; I’ve knocked off 3 straights in book three already!).

But the Game of Thrones HBO adaption is gratuitous in its violence against women, both adult and young. I’m not even on the finale yet and I’m appalled by this season (compounded with others). Yes, men meet horrible fates too, so you don’t need to berate me about Theon Theon Theon and his lack of a tallywhacker. There is just such an overt sexualization and abuse of women in this series that it leaves me gobsmacked that people aren’t made uncomfortable watching this.

We have a responsibility to recognize, learn, and stop the atrocities that have been afflicted on women historically, but this drama is *NOT* history (though Martin and others claim it’s all inspired by historic events such as the War of the Roses — and subsequently explain away how this level of violence is fine and dandy).

This is a fantasy show with horrific pacing and horrific acts of violence against women just for shock value, and it just gives me pause when I think, “…why are people entertained by this? Is this what we want to see?” Because I can guarantee one thing… it certainly isn’t teaching anyone about equality, history, or the horrors real women all over the world suffer daily. It’s glorifying these awful events as entertainment.

I haven’t watched the finale yet, but I’m already so uncomfortable I had to leave the room. And there is no come back that says, “The finale will make everything better.” Because no. The rape, the abuse, the misogynistic sex — hell’s bells, what on earth are people enjoying about this and what the hell kind of people write this?

Feel free to disagree — I don’t mind and don’t mind anyone who likes GoT. I just can only watch so much rape or murdering of young girls before I get angry. And for the die-hard fans, Arya Stark doing something AMAZING eventually is not going to make up for all of the treacherous treatment of women by this series. Yes, bad stuff happens to all sorts of people in Game of Thrones, but you’d have to be blind not to see that this mostly happens to women. This show sells abuse.

Okay, rant over. Sorry… but not so sorry for saying what every man and woman should be saying. *clicks post because, unlike Theon, I’ve still got and deserve my junk*

Such May-ness

Yikes! It’s been forever. I did not exactly fall off the planet, but I got quite close to the Moon. More on that — and the poems that resulted from it — to be covered another time.

Apprentice (hardcover) went live back in December, though due to a panoply of ponderous circumstances, I didn’t get to promote it much (or at all). Don’t worry: that’ll change very soon, starting with some giveaways that I’ll announce in a few days. :)

On a fanciful note, MasterChef Australia is currently my snuggly lifeline to sanity; even the cat — more on him another time, too — knows not to eat the houseplants during my nightly voyage into the world of Ozzie home cookery.

And while we’re on the topic of food, I just got back from my St Cross reunion in Boston. (It was a complete blast to reunite with Oxford peeps and then faff about Harvard Square in an awesome hat.)

Anyway, because I’m compelled to go to dive bars with scrumptastic reputations, yours truly found himself at a biker bar in Derby, Connecticut eating food (in a completely INAPPROPRIATE HAT) that could drop an elephant at 20 paces.

Behold the gloriousness of the Parmesan Butter Bacon Garlic Burger, courtesy of the Dew Drop Inn:

My Death on a Plate

…this probably explains my lack of appetite for the last few days. Burp. Keep it classy, kids, keep it classy.


West Coast Inspiration

China BeachSo yes, I’m on one of my retreats to the West Coast! Humidity and nasty heat claimed my East Coast Pine Forest like a Texan noms on barbecue, so the immediate desire to flee to a place with better weather and a different sort of energy consumed me. I also had to see a man about a cat.

I’ve been slightly detached from the blog and even Apprentice itself as I experienced one of the rare joys a published author is afforded — nothingness. Sure, the thoughts were still bursting around in the head (I’m not sure that ever stops for a writer), but with the manuscript off to the copyeditor, I could very happily divorce myself from worrying about book two for a few weeks. It’s NICE.

But then you get the itch. I had planned to get some writing done while away, but it wasn’t the hugest of my priorities. Then, as I took a two hour stroll (me, strolling, two hours, I know) along China Beach and Land’s End, BAM! It happened. Book three (I already have a lot of it outlined, so it’s not like I’m starting from scratch) has its first proper words. Rather, its first proper scene! Chapter one, scene one, written. And I am pleased. :) Lenna’s ending draws nigh, but at least we see the return of some fan favorites…

Book Three SpoilerDon’t worry… not all is what it seems! In any case, while I nurse my sunburn and cook my rabbit (really — I have a rabbit to cook), know that I’m writing/living/working/loving just so I become a better Brian for all of you supporting me back home, here, and abroad! I miss you all so much!

Book three, here we go.

Book Three - Beginning

Hiring: Temporary Editorial Assistants!

That’s right, Moon Rabbit Publishing, LLC is in the market for some temporary editorial assistants, which is a glorified way of saying “paid beta-reader” as we find our workload increasing. This is not a job for copyediting, proofreading, or substantive editing and as such the pay will reflect a fair, flat rate based on the current market of beta-readers.

Job Description: You will receive a digital proof (format of your choosing) of Apprentice, a novel to be released late summer 2014. Within two weeks of receipt, you will have read the manuscript and written an approximate 500 word (two standard pages) brief containing feedback on the plot, how characters are received, overall flow/pacing, and anything else you’d like to mention. I will also include a document with some guidelines to assist with the write-up of the report. You are not required to correct or proofread, though if you do notice any glaring errors, plot holes, etc., you are more than welcome to point them out.

Job Requirements: A reader with an excellent command of the English language, preferably one with proven experience in either beta-reading or reviewing (I may ask for samples). While not required, as Apprentice is part two of a trilogy, having read its predecessor, Librarian, is a major plus.

Compensation: Based on the market and availability of beta-readers who provide similar services for free, assistants will be paid $50 USD, payable via check or PayPal (PayPal exclusively if assistant is not based in the United States). Additionally, they will receive credit in the acknowledgements section of the completed novel and a free digital copy of the novel upon publication. In short, you’ll be paid to write a small book report and be part of the publishing industry. More than most interns get!

Interested parties, please contact Brian with your name, email address, and qualifications.

Reset the Net

A lot of my friends and family members don’t seem to realize how vulnerable they leave themselves in regard to Internet. I’m not just talking about ‘hackers’ or those ‘nasty viruses’ you get from downloading porn (you know who you are): governments and corporations also use loopholes and dubious means to extract what we think is private.

Sign the petition and get the privacy pack. Protect yourself; reset the net.

The Status Update Weeks in the Making

I’ve been pretty much MIA as far as the blog is concerned, I know. All of a sudden I found myself insanely busy wrapping up the tweaks on Apprentice, but now I’m happy to say that, after I actually read the damn thing on my Kindle from start to finish, I found myself pleased enough to have turned it over to my copyeditor at 110k words! Yikes! 14000 more words than Librarian!

Kindle Mock-Up

There will be some fun reveals in the near future (cover art within the next week hopefully, website revamp, and perhaps some special treats for fans of Librarian…).

IN ANY CASE, to the some announcements/updates:

  • Beta-readers! That’s right; it’s that time again. We’re looking for beta-readers of the digital version of Apprentice. It’s free, but we’d love feedback in return. Contact Brian with your choice of format (.epub, .mobi, .pdf are all options).
  • Editorial Assistants! Woah, we’re getting fancy. Moon Rabbit Publishing, LLC, is looking to contract a few associate editors to preview the book and offer substantive critique — imagine writing a small book report, but getting paid for it! Details here.
  • ARCs (Advance Reader Copies)! Authors, reviewers, and bloggers — we will be reaching out to you in the next week or so, but if you don’t hear from us and are interested in a galley for review (or a review swap), please contact Brian. We want your words on that cover!
  • Release Date! The best news of all: the tentative release date for Apprentice is scheduled for the best day of all… Brian’s birthday! That’s right, we’re looking to go gold on Monday, 25th August 2014! In the upcoming weeks, look for special promotions for people who preorder signed copies. :)

Well, that was a mouthful! But yay! Progress! Now, time to go kill my D&D players…