Tag: blogging

Resolutions, writing, and all of that sort of thing..

I woke up this morning. Correction, I was woken up this morning by my child. Ate waffles, drank coffee, played, then went to the park while my wife hit up Costco for necessary stuff. Costco is one of those places that gives me hives so I like staying home with the kid and letting my wife handle that madness. Now it’s afternoon, wife and kid are napping, Costco imitation LaCroix is in the fridge, coffee is made, so I figured I would knock out a bit of blogging and maybe some reading.

Even with the hectic holiday schedule sucking my life away I’ve made it a point to write a bit every day. Mostly in my pen and paper journal, but even put down some words towards my 2020 project. My daily journaling and idea writing has become important to me and I enjoy going back through old notebooks and re-discovering thoughts and ideas.

One of the obvious topics around this time of year is resolutions. What will I do this year. I’m big on planning and aiming for goals. I like to set one big goal and break it down into smaller ones in order to track progress. David Steward has a great series of videos on goal setting and accomplishment, his playlist called Keys to Prolific Creation is worth any creative persons time.

So, my main goal for 2020 is to complete my pivot away from short story writing into full-length novels and publish my first independent novel. A challenge due to the fact that I will be somewhere in the South Pacific working, for the majority of the year.

In other news, the recent topic of discussion has been the re-focus on blogs. Jon mentions it here and I’ve seen others bring this up. I’m an advocate of this idea and will do my part towards switching the focus away from Twitter, a platform that is horrible for discourse and community. I’m going to aim for a minimum of two posts a week and aim to refocus my commenting here instead of elsewhere.

I think multi-blog discussions like The Pre-Tolkien Challenge I ran in 2018 is a great way to build up blogging communities with discussion that goes much deeper than anything you can generate on Twitter. Personally I discovered a lot of great fiction due to that challenge. Let’s do some more in 2020.

It’s been awhile old friends.

It’s two in the afternoon on Columbus day. My wife is napping with the kid and I’ve grown bored of trolling all the typical Columbus Day lib-posts, and Morrissey keeps popping up on my Spotifiy mix. In a few hours when everyone wakes up we will head out to our friends for dinner. Life is good.

Life has been busy. Between my life draining job and my responsibilities to my wife and kid I have very little time to myself. That small window of time is mostly taken by reading, writing fiction, and spending time with my wife watching movies or just hanging out. This place has been suffering. Mostly because it was always intended as a author site but right now I don’t really have a lot to put out.

I’ve written some short stories and have some more in the process but none of them really match the indy market. I don’t know where to submit them. I’m coming to the realization that my work doesn’t really jive with what editors like. Especially because I’m using the short story format to experiment with voice and style. I expect that in the future I will put out a collection of stories. I’m just not sure that they make a coherent product at this point.

More importantly I’ve started the groundwork on a novel. The last few months have been dedicated to research. I’m currently in the outline phase and plan on starting the first draft around the Thanksgiving holiday. The goal is to finish and publish before I head out on another South Pacific adventure next spring.

But, I digress. The point of this post was to discuss my plan for this blog. I’ve feel that a lot of fantasy review blogs suck. I can’t stand reading most of them. So instead of whining I’m going to start writing more in-depth reviews of books I think need general attention. I’m going to focus on indy books, specifically in the pulp-rev adjacent scene.

The reviews I plan on writing will be comprehensive. I’ll take recommendations but I’m rather picky when it comes to what I want to read so I might never get around to doing one on a book you wrote or would like reviewed.

I created a badge system. My reviews will only have three ratings. Blank, Honorable, and Golden. I will go in depth about what each entails but expect the majority of books to get blanks.

California

It’s been seventeen days, five thousand or so miles, three airports, three hotels, two planes, one car rental, and we are finally with family in California.

Flying across the Pacific Ocean with my wife, a seven-month-old baby, and our dog has been a challenge. Living out of suitcases and sleeping in airport lounges has been an experience and even after seventeen days, our journey is far from over.

Everything we own that we didn’t carry with us is making the slow trip across the Pacific by container ship and will not arrive until the end of next month. That means we are living in a new place with minimal furnishing.

It’s enlightening how one can accomplish day to day tasks with limited supplies and how much we take the simple things for granted.


Expect intermittent sporadic transmissions in the coming months.

Rethinking the Blog

I’m sitting here at my favorite bar in Yokosuka Japan enjoying a cigar and dark beer reflecting on the past five years of blogging. I begun blogging early on when I first decided to take writing seriously.

When I started Barbarian Book Club my goal was to use this space to document my writing process and to make it a hub for promoting my writing. In the past few years due to this place and social media I’ve grown as a writer and also developed numerous professional connections in the independent world of writing.

But, honestly I’ve used this place as an extension of my social media, almost as a long-form version of Twitter.

Yet the biggest undercurrent of development in my growth as a writer has been in the scope of the politic. The more I’ve delved into the culture of the creative the more I’ve realized that all art is strictly in the philosophical and the political. Every act of art is political and cultural because culture is anchored in the political. Culture does not exist independent of politics, because culture is intertwined and reflects the philosophy of the creator.

Accepting the above fact means that I’m no longer going to shy away from using this medium to discuss my philosophical and political observations. Views that have matured and changed drastically in the past five years.

Practically what this means is that I will be using this place as a home not just for my writing but for my observations on culture, life, politics, and religion.

I plan on restructuring this space away from a focus on everyday blogging and towards a more essay focused medium discussing subjects such as masculinity, fatherhood, personal growth, and how these subjects pertain to a fledgling career in the independent publishing subculture.

I have a lot of material planned and outlined and I hope I can grow this page as a discussion hub or at least a place worth visiting for like minded readers and writers.

Ongoing Projects

Upcoming Novella

Storyhack0I started work on what I’m hoping will end up a multi-chapter novella or short novel. It will be an action-packed story of adventure and exploration set in my Musket & Magic world of colonial powers, treacherous┬ájungles, and ancient magic that I introduced in my Storyhack Issue 0 piece. The adventure features the exile Valen, his servant Bartholomeus, and the uptight Capitan Henrik. If you haven’t read A Tiger in the Garden go ahead and pick up Storyhack 0 and give it a read.

Amazon Associate Program

Barbarian Book Club is basically a personal journal that I use to challenge myself to write. I also love talking about the books I’ve read, my currently sparse writing, and games I’m currently playing. I know that people enjoy discussing books and both real life and online friends have picked up books I’ve discussed and recommended on here. I figure that if I really enjoy the book or game I might as well use an associate link and if you the reader enjoy my content and want to read the same stuff you will buy it from Amazon using my link. Will this work? Probably not, but if I manage to make 2.99 in three months that equals to about one large coffee or one indy book. So, please click on my links if you decide to read the same stuff I do.