Tag Archives: Chris Lester

Episode #88: Writing in the Midst of Bad News, Bad Luck, and Grief

Hey there, remember us?

Yeah, we know. We thought we were done with the hiccups in the schedule, but this thing called February happened. Things didn’t get better in March. And April was not shaping up to be any kind of improvement. Sure, we had content in the hopper, we had stuff we wanted to talk about, and we wanted to talk to you all. Problem is, we had a full plate of ADULTING to cope with, and that is what this comeback episode of The Shared Desk is all about — when Life refuses to cut you a break.

We have some thoughts on what to do about it.

00:00 —  Introduction

  • Remember us?
  • So that’s why Tee is so interesting to people…
  • Are you feeling defeatist? BETTER NOT!
  • It’s been some time, not that we are light on content…

01:04 —  Episode #88: Writing in the Midst of Bad News, Bad Luck, and Grief

  • We’ve got some really cool stuff in the backlog…
    • Chatting with K.T. Bryski about the 2018 Smoky Writers
    • An interview with Chris Lester
    • A reunion of Verena & Christina on the show
  • …but we were sidetracked. Or maybe we were derailed.
  • A bit of a bomb was dropped in Tee’s lap two weeks after the last show.
    • Sure, Tee would love to go full time with his writing. But there’s this thing called health insurance.
    • Attention was dedicated to finding Tee a job.
    • Not all bad news. Despite our efforts, our daughter is taking first steps into a writer’s life.
  • Coming off of Smoky, Tee was riding a wave. This is probably why Tee’s “short story” for Tales from the Archives is…not so short.
  • Tried accessing TeeMorris.com or HappyHourFromTheTower.com last month? Well, yeah, black (ass)hat hackers made that a little difficult.
  • So…job is in trouble, the hunt is on for a new gig, two of Tee’s sites get hacked. Could things get any worse?
    • Whenever your mom calls you at 6 a.m., it cannot be good.
    • Tee’s mom, Tee’s brother, and Tee sat down…and decisions were made.
    • Saturday, March 24.
  • Nope. Life is still not done with Tee as he returns to his Day Job to discover…
  • How do you get back on your feet?
  • Hold up, Fam —Tee’s good.
    • My Twitch streams have been helping him cope. It’s like the early days of podcasting, but with video games.
    • Tee kept the Day Job situation close to the vest for a reason.
    • The new Day Job coming has got Tee grooving to this song…
    • How having the new job already lined up helped Tee through his Dad’s Memorial.
  • There may be good intentions behind “Get back on the horse…” but sometimes, you need to keep your pie-hole shut. Tee knows this. Sadly. Concerning his friend, Kim Headlee.
  • Writers react to death, grief, and stress differently. That is a truth.
  • To the people who think Tee and Pip should be full time in writing by now…
  • Interviewing for Day Jobs — especially ones that are just for show — are exhausting.
  • There are different ways to cope with death, grief, and stress. It’s okay to ask for help.
  • What writers need to do: set a date for a return.
  • Escapes are good. Escapes are essential.
  •  Tee’s Dad may never appear in a novel of his, but there will be influences and reflections a-plenty.
    • The Case of the Pitcher’s Pendant will always be that story for his father.
    • Too bad his dad liked the first one more.
  • Allow yourself to grieve.
  • And remember, you are not alone in the world. You are not.
    • Tee shares his breaking point.
    • Cheesy as it may sound, there is something good about hitting rock bottom.
    • Through all this, Pip discovers a super power.
    • Embrace your Tribe.
  • When you are ready, turn your grief, your darkness, your pain, into characters that resonate with readers. When you are ready.

29:02 —  Writers Off the Clock

  • Holy shit, this soundtrack is AWESOME!!!
  • Spoilers, Will Robinson! We are going to riff a bit about…
  • To really understand this reboot, you have to travel back in time to the original Lost in Space
    …which doesn’t quite age well. At all. Let’s discuss.
  • Decades later, Hollywood decided to take Lost in Space into a darker corner…
    …and no, things didn’t really fall apart with Matt LeBlanc. It started with the script.
  • “But early Doctor Who is pretty chintzy,” you say? About that…
  • GENERAL FANDOM: Lost in Space is a sacred cow. No need to remake it, reboot it, or retool it for a modern audience.
    NETFLIX: Hold my beer.
  • What Tee and Pip did not like about Lost in Space
  • What did Tee and Pip like about Netflix’s Lost in Space? Where do we begin?
    • Acting — on point and incredible
    • Women were taking the lead without emasculating the men,
    • The management of huge cast — everyone had their moment!
    • Everyone felt real.
  • Let’s talk about Parker Posey, Dr. Smith, and how she polished this turd-of-a-character and redefines this science fiction villain.
  • The creative crew of this new Lost in Space slip in a lot of nods to both the original television and film.
  • Opinions on the Robot
  • Already planning a re-watch.
  • Kid-Friendly…but there are some tense moments…

54:19 — The Wrap-Up

  • Tee and Pip had a lot to share with the class.
  • What will Tee do on his off-week before the new day job?
    • Play video games.
    • Mulch the garden…if weather permits.
    • Read up on Open Source.
    • Write. Write. Write.
  • Where will Pip and Tee be, you might wonder?
  • Other news you should know about…
  • If you have an event and want The Shared Desk to appear there, or if you just want to share an opinion about the show, here’s where to find us…
    • 703.791.1701
    • pip@pjballantine.com
    • tee@teemorris.com
    • …and social media, of course.
  • Watch for those shows from our audio vault! They are en route!

Find us on Twitter at either Tee’s or Pip’s account,
leave us a voicemail or questions for the show at 703.791.1701,
or leave us a comment here at the blog.
We’ll talk about it!
And remember, you can find the show on iTunes or Stitcher!
Subscribe, listen, and review.

Enjoy the ride
and we’ll catch you later.

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Episode #78: Authors Behaving Badly

We’re back. Miss us?

00:00 —  Introduction

  • Sorry for the break, everybody.
  • Anyone else stoked for The Defenders?
  • What are we up to?
    • How about that Motor City Steam Con?

    • So nice to get some time in with Chris Lester.
    • Talking a lot about the shenanigans in Detroit! What a great event!
    • Finishing up Podcasting for Dummies…finally.
    • Tucking in with Operation: Endgame…finally.
  • Pip’s been having a long week along with Jessica Jones.
    • Also working on Operation: Endgame
    • Also working on Immortal Sisters
    • AND ALSO…working on a BRAND NEW novel!

06:57 —  Episode #78: Authors Behaving Badly

  • If you have seen authors really hopping off the rails, share your stories with us at…
    • 703-791-1701
    • tee@teemorris.com or pip@pjballantine.com
  • First up: When Storytelling Goes Awry
    • We’re not naming names.
    • The problem isn’t the writing. It was the storytelling.
    • When the books ends abruptly — is that good storytelling?
    • How we stuck with a good story while keeping another story ongoing — yes, it can be done.
    • When you sudden;y discover YOUR CHARACTER IS ACTUALLY BOSS-POWERED!!! Wait, what? 
    • When a twist goes bad for Tee…and never gets better even with three books.
    • Is this a legitimate style, or is this just bad storytelling?
    • Oh…look….the gifted orphans.
  • Next on Our List: Authors Investing into Click-Farms
    • Yeah, you want to make an impact in the publishing industry, but come on…
    • Authors are no longer playing the game so much as authors are playing the system in the worst way possible.
    • Welcome to the wonderful world of Click Farms for Amazon KU. Ugh!
    • This was Tee’s biggest hangup with the KU Program from Day One.
    • These services are cheap. Are they ethical? OH HELL NO.
    • Where are these smart devices coming from, you think?
    • No, KU is a crappy system. Period.
  • Last Item: The Importance of a Workflow
    • Less about writers, more about the support staff you are working with.
    • New technology is cool, but you really should know about a new gadget before incorporating it into a project’s workflow.
    • Even Tee has new tech toys he wants t learn, but he understands limitations and learning curves.
    • Paper trails matter!
    • File Management matters, too! 
  • Pip is Tee’s Landshark of Love.

30:00 —  The Loot Crate Lookie-Loo!

  • This Loot Crate has been gathering dust…
  • July’s Theme: ANIMATION
    • Rick & Morty: A “Rick” statue that carries explicit content
    • Bob’s Burgers Recipe Collection (Very cool, LootCrate!)
    • Tee-shirt: Classic Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles
    • A “SLURM” koozie from the world of Futurama
    • Nice Loot Crate pin, also from Bob’s Burgers
  • Tee grabs for the booklet as there really isn’t anything from our fandoms. We need help trying to figure out what this Bob’s Burgers item is all about…
  • This Loot Crate is a first for us, and that will make attendees of our panels VERY happy!

35:08 — The Wrap-Up

  • The things they say in New Zealand…
  • Oooooh, Coconut!
  • Where are we going to be?
    • Starting 1 August, The Dog Days of Podcasting is happening here! HAPPENING NOW!  (And here’s why Tee’s doing this here!)
    • 19 August, Murder As You Like It in Mechanicsburg, PA
    • 1-4 September, Escape Velocity in Washington, D.C.
    • October, The Maryland Renaissance Festival is
    • 28 October, Tee will be alongside Chuck Tomasi, hosting the P.I.Y. Workshop, a launch event for Podcasting for Dummies, 3rd Edition
    • If you have an event and want The Shared Desk to appear there, here’s where to find us…
      • 703.791.1701
      • pip@pjballantine.com
      • tee@teemorris.com
      • …and social media, of course.
  • And with all this, we want Operation: Endgame to happen by Halloween
  • And did you know that Pip has a Patreon? SHE DOES, YOU KNOW!!!
  • We got lots to do, so see you in two weeks!

Find us on Twitter at either Tee’s or Pip’s account,
leave us a voicemail or questions for the show at 703.791.1701,
or leave us a comment here at the blog.
We’ll talk about it!
And remember, you can find the show on iTunes or Stitcher!
Subscribe, listen, and review.

Enjoy the ride
and we’ll catch you later.

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Episode #74: Your Voicemails!

It’s so nice to breathe again, and because we got over the bug that we’ve passed back and forth to one another, we are back with a brand new Shared Desk! We have The Nebula Awards Conference this weekend, so as we are prepping for that, we’re turning to our voicemails and spending some time with you this go-round! (See—when you leave us Voicemail, we put you on the show!) We are also debuting a new segment for the show. Make sure to let us know what you think at 703-791-1701, and we may feature you in a segment or a special show just like this one.

Well, not just like this one as we are not going to get the exact feedback.

You know what we mean!

00:00 —  Introduction

  • No longer shouting into the mic. See, Pip can be taught!
  • Thanks, Billy, for the sweet drop-in!
  • Big shout out for all this great geekery on the television. Well, not all of it…
  • Anyone else excited about The Defenders?
  • Finally over the sniffles, the coughing, and the congestion…

03:54 — Episode 74: Your Voicemails!

  • Some Voicemail love
    • We’ve been letting the voicemails stack up, so we’re giving the whole show to them.
    • Some cross-promotion for Happy Hour from the Tower
    • Upcoming Podcasting for Dummies shenanigans
    • …and yeah, a lot of podcasting in the works for the both of us!
  • First Voicemail: Brian Webber & Episode 69
  • Second Voicemail: Chris Lester & Episode 71
    • Chris knows how to plug!
    • The theory of what brings on The Impostor Syndrome
    • Chris’ introduction to Hamilton parallels Tee’s
    • Some Hamilton trivia, especially Lin-Manuel Miranda at the White House
    • Lin-Manuel Miranda and the Creative Process
    • A discussion about being a “Genius”
  • Third Voicemail: Nobilis Reed & Episode 73
    • When authors don’t want to move forward, why does that mean readers can’t?
    • The end can be the beginning, whether it is a role-playing game (like ours!) or writing fan fiction.
    • Fan fiction is a healthy extension of where an author’s work ends.
    • Mike Rigg launched the Steam Rollers Adventure Podcast as an extension of his own world (and Tee loves to listen).
  • Fourth Voicemail: Steve Pritchard & Episode 73
    • More reminiscing over Billi Baddings
    • Passing along notes to other writers and passing the torch…
    • Looking back on Iron Fist
  • Yes, we love Listener Feedback so drop us a line…
    • 703.791.1701
    • tee (at) teemorris (dot) com
    • pip (at) pjballantine (dot) com
    • ….or leave us a comment right here in the show’s post! 
  • Pip gets all foreign on Tee again.

28:07 — What’s Cookin’, Writers? 

  • And now, the Spirit Animal of Tee and Pip’s Kitchen
  • How did this segment come about? It all started with a Facebook exchange from Tommy Garza…
  • If you think we cook like crazy, how about that Piper J Drake?
  • Smoking Meats: The Basics
    • Step 1: Get Yourself a Smoker

    • Be careful—you may get so attached to your smoker, you may put your life before this appliance.
    • Char-Broil Electric Smoker. Great device, dodgy app.
  • The Zen of Smoked Meats
    • This is not an impulse thing. You plan for smoking meats.
    • Smoking meats is great for writers!
    • You want wood? We got wood!
  • Char Broil has a great website for tips on smoking meats.
  • Try different flavors with your wood. Find out what works for you.
  • Whatever the cooking time, add one hour.
  • Smoking Ribs: The 3-2-1 Method
    • Enjoy your double innuendos.
    • The Tea & Spice Exchange is great for rubs!
    • Farmers’ Markets also carry terrific rubs.
    • Apply rub to your meat, smoke that for three hours.
    • Then baste your meat, smoke for two hours. (We love using cider from Cobbler Mountain Cellars.)
    • Cover in a sauce of your liking, smoke for an hour.
    • Serve, eat, and you’re welcome.
  • And now, since we’re talking about poultry, let’s talk about spatchcocking.
  • Shout out to Scott Sigler!
  • Closing with brisket
  • Want to try Blue Apron? Reach out to us. Let us know…

45:45 — The Wrap-Up

Find us on Twitter at either Tee’s or Pip’s account,
leave us a voicemail or questions for the show at 703.791.1701,
or leave us a comment here at the blog.
We’ll talk about it!
And remember, you can find the show on iTunes or Stitcher!
Subscribe, listen, and review.

Enjoy the ride
and we’ll catch you later.

Leave a Comment

Filed under Episodes