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Episode #85: Ending a Series

Did you hear? We have a new book on the shelves! (The digital ones anyway.) With Operation: Endgame out and waiting for you to read, The Shared Desk is looking back on the ministry of Peculiar Occurrences and talks about everything a writer thinks, feels, and fears when wrapping up a series and dropping the curtain on familiar grounds.

And really, are they done with the Ministry? Well……

00:00 —  Introduction

  • Whew! It’s been a week…
  • If you want to relax, Dunkirk is NOT the movie to help you with that.
  • Okay, if you didn’t hear about it today…
    • Operation: Endgame is coming out today in all digital formats.
    • And did you know a new Christmas story is out for Tales from the Archives?
    • Audio and print books are coming in January/February 2018.
    • There’s also a special offer on 12/26 and 12/27 so download your copy now!

04:08 —  Episode #85: Ending a Series

  • You are having so much fun with this series, but now comes a time to wrap it up.
    • Nothing new for Pip with the Books of the Order.
    • For Tee, reaching the end has been proving elusive.
  • There’s a lot of time invested into a series, its characters, its world…and you wonder if you have one more book in you.
  • Is the drive and the desire there?
  • Pip was sad to see Sorcha and Raed go…but she got over it.
  • Tee’s issue with getting Operation: Endgame done — REAL LIFE.
  • Tee’s failed attempts at writing a series
    • MOREVI (which has fans on PSN and Twitch apparently)
    • The Billibub Baddings Mysteries
  • Tee may not have wanted to say goodbye to Books & Braun just yet…
  • The Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences is not going anywhere. The podcast and this series, however, are done.
  • Ending on your own terms feels pretty damn good.
  • Kickstarter made it clear: A demand was there.
  • Tee finished Operation: Endgame…and fell apart.
  • Achievement Unlocked: We reached the end we had planned.
  • Verity Fitzroy is making the sting of ending a series less painful.
  • Change of all kinds take place in Operation: Endgame.
  • We do resolve things in the book…mostly.
  • BIG SHOUT-OUT to our editor, K.T. Bryski who will be here next week!
  • Humble beginnings to the series and the wild ride that ensued…
  • And we’re still married…but there was that one time during Curse of the Silver Pharaoh….
  • Taking a break from now until the summer because we got stuff to do on our own!
  • How can we forget Countless Hues of Crimson? Rivaled only by this amazing work of literature
  • Taking a bittersweet Victory Lap

26:40 — Writers Off the Clock

  • We just finished a book. LET’S GO TO THE MOVIES!!!
  • Let’s talk about some of the movies we saw over the weekend….
  • Dunkirk

    • Hans Zimmer decides to actually give us a really amazing score for this cinematic triumph.
    • Wait? you mean, things happened in World War II before Americans got involved?
    • Just brace yourself for those first ten minutes.
    • Hands down, Nolan’s best film.
  • Star Wars: The Last Jedi 

    • Spoiler Alert — JUMP TO TIMECODE 42:09 TO AVOID SPOILERS
    • LAST CHANCE — 42:09 TO AVOID SPOILERS
    • Tee liked it more than Return of the Jedi and The Force Awakens, but did not like it as much as Rogue One
    • Thoughts on the middle section
    • Thoughts on Rose
    • Thoughts on humor in Star Wars
    • Thoughts on Mary Poppins
    • Thoughts on Fan Rage
    • Thoughts from someone else about how we’ve been here before…
  • Bright

    • Bright is, according to Pip, Shadowrun.
    • It was more like Training Day: Shadowrun, but here’s the rundown of this (pretty damn clever) plot.
    • This is not high art, but it does not pretend to be anything else than what it is. AND IT WORKS!
    • Definitely rocking a Men in Black or Alien Nation vibe.
    • We talked about Suicide Squad, but this is a better film.
    • Critics are hating Bright…but Netflix is listening to the audience. 
    • Why Alien Nation was a better television show than it was a movie.
    • Is race an issue in this movie? Yes. Because LOOK AT OUR FREAKIN’ HEADLINES!

50:42 — The Wrap-Up

  • The Adventures of Centaur Cop, coming soon from Pip Ballantine.
  • We’re done for the year. So, go out, use that Amazon.com gift card, and buy our new book!
  • K.T. Bryski is coming!
  • 2017 was better than 2016, that’s for damn sure.
  • Foreshadowing for the next show — Your Author Word for 2018!
  • 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.
  • Pip’s Patreon will feature the first episode of her ALL-NEW PODCAST!
  • See you in 2018!

54:15 — The Last Word

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 #84: What’s Going On at Goodreads?

We are horrendously late getting this episode out (but don’t sweat it as we’re going to be recording another one next week!) but let’s call it like it is: November was a cray-cray month! After a wild ride between the end of October and the beginning of November, The Shared Desk is reflecting on their week of solid creativity, and also share their thoughts about a creative Kiwi and his recent motion picture that you may have heard of.

So, yeah, it took us a few weeks to getting around to posting this episode. We blame jetlag, the holidays, and smoking meats…

00:00 —  Introduction

08:05 —  Episode #84: What’s Going On at Goodreads?

  • A development over at the social network for authors and readers worldwide: Goodreads
  • Tee thinks this Goodreads situation is actually a good thing, making authors stop and look at the value of a “giveaway” be it on Good Reads or book blogs.
  • What is the real R.O.I. on working with book bloggers and blog tours?
  • So now, what are independent publishers expected to do?
  • Publishers, from our own experience, do not throw money at authors and rarely throw money into promotion.
  • With the free giveaway gone, why stick around with Goodreads?
  • Disagree with us? Then sound off…
    • …on the voicemail at 703-791-1701
    • tee (at) teemorris (dot) com
    • pip (at) pjballantine (dot) com
  • What are the options remaining for authors?
    • Your email list is your email list. Always.
    • Social media platforms like Goodreads, Facebook, and the like? No, they are not there for you.
    • A content creator’s relationship with Facebook
    • Instagram and advertising — nice idea, but…
    • Speaking of Instagram, here’s the new schtick…
  • Tee has been returning to Twitter, thanks to Twitch.
  • Cover Reveals: Pro’s and Con’s
  • The great debate on writers blogging
  • Pip and Tee start planning for 2018…

29:08 — The Loot Crate Lookie-Loo

  • Pip is cutting the show short in order to get to this month’s Loot Crate!
  • Neither Tee nor Pip can remember this month’s theme. Tee guesses…and gets it wrong.
  • November’s Loot Crate: UNIFY
    • From Funko Pop, a Loot Crate exclusive of Overwatch’s Widowmaker
    • The mini Q-Fig celebrates the Power Rangers. (And if you blink, you might miss a Red Ranger sighting in Stranger Things 2)
    • The Tee-Shirt: Voltron…in elegant 8-bit renderings! (Maybe Serena could wear it as a nightshirt.)
    • Wait a minute, Loot Crate, you think your cat is looking rough-and-tumble in the Punisher hat? Hold on…from 2016, thank you……
    • Pin: Superheroes assembled!
    • Comic Book Reprint: Justice League of America (their first appearance), presented by Brave and the Bold
  • Divvying up the Loot
  • Pip sometimes misses those details that matter.
  • Tee is counting down to December’s Loot Crate: EXPLORE.
    • Star Wars
    • Destiny 2
    • Guardians of the Galaxy
    • ….and a mystery franchise.
  • Since we mentioned Guardians of the Galaxy, how about DAT TRAILER!

    • Total nerdgasm at the Morris household!
    • Mantis: “Hey, Hemsworth!”

36:25 — The Wrap-Up

  • A few thoughts on Star Wars Day in Woodbridge, VA. You might want to not compare the U.S. Boy Scouts with…
  • Quick shout-out to TD-0013, the only Imperial Stormtrooper I love!
  • December 16, 10a – 7p — Jirani’s Christmas Con in Manassas, VA
  • Sadly, no MAGFest this year, but…
  • Happy Hour from the Tower is heading to GuardianCon 2018 in July!!!
  • Other events confirmed for 2018:
    • RavenCon (April)
    • Steampunk Symposium (April)
    • Steampunk World’s Fair (May)
  • Eyeing up Balticon for 2018.
  • Two weeks of Shared Desk, I know, right?
  • When did Old town Manassas get cool?
  • Pip’s Patreon will feature the first episode of her ALL-NEW PODCAST!
  • 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.
  • 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 #80: Promotion Across Audiences

Guess who’s spending some time with us here at Casa de Morris? Piper J Drake is in studio, and we are bringing her on the mic for a brand new episode of The Shared Desk. Our eightieth show gets its topic of discussion from Twitter, and with Piper in studio you can be guaranteed of shenanigans happening!

 

00:00 —  Introduction

  • A little bit of pre-show silliness
  • Stand back, everyone! We know what we’re doing!
  • Piper J Drake is in the house. And has she been busy…
  • Pip sneaks in an Operation: Endgame burn while also kicking off a new series called the Broken Dead, set in Southern Virginia.
  • Quick plug for the Proper Pie Company.
  • Do you name drop in your works-in-progress? Topic for another time.
  • How about Tee? What’s he been up to?
    • The third Edition of Podcasting for Dummies is done…and it is for sale! (Pre-order, of course.)
    • Chuck Tomasi and I are celebrating the Podcasting for Dummies release with a special workshop!
    • Quick aside: Matt’s running again, but he still has to keep up with Tee as he’s got the Dogfish Dash and The Woodrow Wilson Half-Marathon coming up!
    • Spent Labor Day weekend at Escape Velocity 2017
    • Tee completes The Dog Days of Podcasting 2017 Challenge! (Enjoy the extra shows, everyone?)

10:11 —  Episode #80: Promotion Across Audiences

  • Today’s show topic comes from Twitter, where…
    • Tee can be found.
    • Pip can be found.
    • Piper can be found.
  • Colin Coyle asks us on Twitter about the challenges we face in promoting our works across audiences.
  • Piper’s cross-genre journey as a writer, and how she found herself in the Romantic Suspense genre.
    • The Safeguard series (which was reflective of Piper’s science fiction Triton Experiment series)
    • The True Heroes series (which features in Ultimate Courage a very familiar someone…)
  • Does an audience follow you or do they follow the genre? How do you bring readers into new territory?
  • What about when you straddle both non-fiction and fiction? Can you successfully market across that divide?
  • Speaking of podcasting, Piper is spreading her wings into the podosphere with Writing Excuses!
  • Non-fiction works can be regarded in writing as audition pieces for fiction.
  • How does your voice change from work to work, genre to genre? And will audiences follow you?
  • Tee’s heard both of Peej’s voices, and he likes them both!
  • There are different genres we all write in, but there are common traits in what stories we tell and what characters we create.
  • How do you look at your works-in-progress and upcoming releases from a promotional perspective?
  • Pip tends to hear whispers from Nick as she’s working on her works!
  • Thanks again, Colin, for the show topic!

33:41 — What’s Cookin’, Writers? 

  • Things Piper would never here in her kitchen…
  • Pip indulges ina Jeff Goldblum moment.
  • We dared the impossible: The Ramen Burrito

  • What Pip, Piper, and Tee put into their Ramen Burrito
    • Ramen noodles (quality be damned!)
    • Fried egg (runny)
    • Grilled Chicken Strips (including tips on how to make the most of frozen chicken strips)
    • Seasoning includes butter, Sesame Oil, chicken spice packets, and Chinese five-spice
    • Cucumber for crunch and for greenage in your Ramen Burrito (but we offer options)
  • The Ramen Burrito may be coming to Smoky Writers…
  • Our experience inspired others to create variations on this disturbing theme!
  • Would we do the Ramen Burrito aga—YES!!!

45:29 — The Wrap-Up

  • This “In the Kitchen” segment will probably happen again when Peej is in town!
  • 2017 is coming to a close…
    • October 21, The Maryland Renaissance Festival’s “Day of Wrong” is coming. Stay tuned for details.
    • 28 October, Tee will be alongside Chuck Tomasi, hosting the P.I.Y. Workshop, a launch event for Podcasting for Dummies, 3rd Edition
    • And we have two events already booked for 2018…
    • MAD LOVE FOR JOHN STRANGEWAY!
  • Piper was taking a break from appearances, but we did have some fun with her at the 2017 Nebula Awards in Pittsburgh. She’s kicking off her 2018 Appearances with Coastal City Magic in Florida!
  • Tee and Nick are planning to take Happy Hour from the Tower on the road.
  • The Steampunk World’s Fair will be a full-circle moment for Tee, Pip, Peej, and the Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences.
  • And did you know that Pip has a Patreon? SHE DOES, YOU KNOW!!! 
  • 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.

52:20 The 2017 Podcast It Yourself Workshop and Book Launch

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 #64: Following up with K.T. Bryski and Her Writing Grant

 

The streak ends.

We managed to post on our bi-weekly schedule without fail from the beginning of this year to August 24, but as our break was on account of the upcoming Curse of the Silver Pharaoh, we thought you would be okay wth that. Our next two shows we have pre-recorded and are timeshifting the crap out of them, but we are back on track after a month of hardcore editing!

On this episode of The Shared Desk, we’re following-up with frequent guest and adoptive-Canadian-daughter, author K.T. Bryski, talking about her podcast Six Stories Told at Night. If you recall on Episode #46, we talked about the grant she submitted for this project. Now hear about the end result!

00:00 —  Introduction

  • Tee flies solo in the introduction
  • So ends the streak.
  • Getting back on track with author K.T. Bryski.

01:55 — Episode #64: Follwing Up with K.T. Bryski

  • We like running video with Skype because we like the eye contact.
  • What brings K.T. back to the Shared Desk?
    • Back in October 2015, we talked about Grants onIf you recall on Episode #46.
    • Now, welcome to Episode #64.
    • A good chunk went to the vocal talent, Blythe Haynes. (And yes, she earned it!)
    • What is Six Stories Told at Night…apart from awesome?
    • What a breathtaking score! WHAT TALENTED MOFO DID YOU HIRE?!
    • And now, Tee works through his insecurity with Alex. (No, no, no….I love you, Alex…)
    • How some alcohol at the Smoky Writers Retreat becomes an incredible original score.
    • And, of course, artwork from Starla!
  • You got the idea. Now how do you get money from DAT HANDSOME PM and his governmental friends?
  • Where do you learn how to write grants?
  • Why not use Kickstarter instead of applying through a grant?
  • The Shared DeskTOTES UNEDITED!!!
  • When applying for grants, what happens when you are done?
    • Is there a review of the project?
    • Is there promotion from the grant foundation?
    • What happens after the project is done?
    • How is the accountability handled?
  • How has K.T.’s podcasting platform and recent writing accolades affected the Six Stories launch and its run?
  • 2016 has been the Year of Bryski!
  • K.T. and Blythe are up to some shenanigans at Black Creek….
  • What’s the response been to Six Stories?
  • And K.T. displays her bass drum skills.
  • A bit more man-love for the Canadian P.M.
  • Wait, what was the question? (Mmmmm….Trudeau……….)
  • So—Grants? worth it?
  • What’s next for K.T. Bryski?
  • Where will K.T. be?
    • CanCon (come and gone….)
    • Road Tripping to Northern Virginia!
  • And Tee lapses into his inner-Donald. (Sorry about that, folks.)

34:32 — The Loot Crate Lookie-Loo

  • First time in-studio special guest…
    sonicboom-lootcrate
  • How’s THAT for a trip down Memory Lane?!
  • One of Boom’s Early Words: “Podcast” (Parenting Done Right!)
  • Boom went with Gaming out of the Loot Crate options. Here’s why…
  • Overwatch? Yeah, that’s Boom’s jam.
  • Inside Boom’s FIRST crate…
    • August’s Theme — Mecha (as part of Loot Crate Gaming)
    • A cyberpunk figure from Deus Ex
    • A tee-shirt from Destiny (and Dad can’t trade it with Boom because it isn’t his size…DAMN!)
  • POP QUIZ: What are the three classes in Destiny? #ProudGamerParentsMoment
  • Back to the Loot Crate…
    • A baseball hat from Lawbreakers
    • A “Big Daddy” patch from the original Bioshock
    • A “Clap Trap” bottle opener from Borderlands 2
  • The interior of the crate reminds Boom of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and we go into the science of the box art.
  • Anyone out there know Lawbreakers?
  • Running down Boom’s first crate: Keep, In the Geek Box, or Something for a Friend?
  • Good first impression on Boom from Loot Crate!
  • Hey, LootCrate — how about a Stranger Things crate? Something to think about!

50:24 — Wrapping up

  • The Curse of the Silver Pharaoh drops tomorrow!
  • Where are we going to be between now and the end of the year…
    • 14-16 October, Steampunk unLimited in Strasburg, PA
    • 22 October, The Maryland Renaissance Festival in Annapolis, MD for the “Day of Wrong”
    • 18-20 November, PhilCon in Cherry Hill, NJ
    • We are getting your voicemails and email, but we’ve been recording jam-packed shows of late. We will be getting to them soon! Until then…
      • Call us at 703.791.1701 (now accessible through the Instagram app!)
      • Send me email — tee@teemorris.com
      • Send Pip email — pip@pjballantine.com
      • …or find us on social media everywhere.

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

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