Tag Archives: The Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences

Episode #30: What’s a Writer’s Internship? (with K.T. Bryski)

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Our intern from the Great White North, ForeWord-nominated author, Katie Bryski, has reached the end of her February internship. The mics are hot and we ask our intern the tough questions

00:00 — Introduction

  • Show #30 — we have been good this year with our regular posting, and Tee’s got some new drop-in’s!!!
  • This is the end of February, and Katie Bryski is hanging in there with her internship at Casa de Morris!
  •  Foreshadowing what’s coming up with this episode…
  • Pip channels her inner-Chole and goes into what she’s been working on…
    • Weather Child — the layout continues with the recent proof
    • Immortal Progeny — After checking with the Book of George (R.R. Martin), the novel is taking shape.
    • We’re looking overseas with our indie books and our agent of awesome.
  • What Katie has been up to since the last show…
    • Apply a few gold medals and Canuck gets cocky!
    • Notes are back from her Stonecoast Mentor.
    • “Research” for her day job…which means she’s drinking beer.
    • Apparently, when it comes to giving us a bit of feedback on how hard Tee & Pip work her, silence is golden.
  • What has Tee been up to?
    • Reworking Wolf in the Fold
    • The Billibub Kickstarter is starting to make some headway after one week. 31%. Not bad.
    • The blog machine rolls on with the Endless Possibilities Blog Tour and on TeeMorris.com!
    • Tee’s drinking beer with Katie. Good times!!!
    • And the job hunt rolls on, but Tee’s considering options…

10:15 — What’s a Writer’s Internship? 

  • How did this whole idea of Katie becoming our intern actually happen?
  • What does an intern for a writer do?
    • There’s a fine line between intern and stalker.
    • Pip takes a guess as to what you’re supposed to do during an internship?
  • What Katie wanted to learn right off the bat: Survival Techniques for Indie Authors
    • Working with Adobe Photoshop
      • It’s all about the image.
      • Mac Boy Vs. PC Girl
      • Getting our digital hands dirty with layers.
      • DepositPhoto.com — Pip’s new friend. And now, Katie’s
    • Working with InDesign
      • Katie LOVES this program…and templates are her friend!
      • There’s still some terms she needs to get familiar with.
      • Giving books personality with InDesign.
      • Pip and Katie share the story behind Weather Child and how Katie went on a journey with the podcast…and now she’s laying out the book in print.
    • K.T. Bryski, editor
      • Taking the red pen in hand.
      • It’s a big step in editing another person’s work, but Stonecoast’s lessons were applied.
  • Katie was learning stuff from how Pip and Tee were dealing with writers in everyday life. (Yikes!)
  • Pip has a pupil in her School of Love and & Despair.
  • But Mighty Mur comes to save the day! (Love ya, Mur!!!)
  • How our intern helped us out
    • Networking us with other podcasts and blogs like 3 Geeks in a Pod
    • Katie drops her contact info — contact (at) ministry of peculiar occurrences (dot) com
  • Katie wants to come back for eBook layout classes
    • A constantly changing technology
    • Barnes & Noble Nook #FAIL
  • Other stuff we did with Katie
  • Katie is leaving….but she’s not leaving.
  • What did the Intern teach the Mentors?
    • Katie is an impressive student, picking up new tools in audio and video.
    • We learned that our Intern is very possessive.
    • Writers don’t have set hours.
    • Just having assistance in setting up the calendar — awesome!
  • The Intern’s First Assignment when she gets home: The Most Canadian Steampunk EVAR!
  • Jack Mangan, the gauntlet has been thrown!

36:21 — Writers Off the Clock: Talking True Detective

  • #DropInFAIL with both of the girls talking over the bumper…
  • Setting the tone for this segment with “Far From Any Road” from The Handsome Family
  • THE. BEST. TELEVISION. SHOW. EVAR. True Detective, on HBO.
  • What is it about True Detective and the appeal of Southern Gothic to geeks?
  • Some critics thought the show was slow, but that’s because they were watching it on Thursday…
  • You have to pay attention with this show.
  • Matthew McConaughey is stepping up as an actor.
  • The characters of this show is like Louisiana — broken.
  • True Detective from a film buff’s perspective.
  • Katie’s perspective from a show “she would never watch.”
  • The gothic science fiction touches throughout True Detective
  • The good news for Katie: She found a source for the last two episodes!
  • Talking about the writing of Nic Pizzolatto, the Executive Producer, Writer, and Creator of True Detective
  • The relationship between Chole and Hart….played seamlessly by Matthew McConaughey and Woody Harrelson
  • A comparison between True Detective and Homicide: Life on the Street

53:47 — The Wrap-Up

  • Pip Ballantine just ignores the music cue. Shocker that.
  • The rise of the anthology? Is it happening?
  • Katie learned stuff with us…but we still have stuff to be teaching her!
  • Pip and Tee turn to the Intern one last time for what’s coming up…
  • Where to contact everybody…
    • Podcasters, bloggers, and media folks, if you want to book Tee & Pip, send a line to contact (at) ministryofpeculiaroccurrences (dot) com
    • Drop Tee and Pip a voicemail at 703.791.1701, or drop us a comment here or in email.
    • SHOW #35 ANNOUNCED AS OUR NEXT VOICEMAIL SHOW!!!
  • How do you say goodbye? Giant freaking robots beating up monsters!
  • Drop-in by request…
  • …and Katie breaks out in to spontaneous song.
  • Tee stumbles though the Creative Commons tag on account of teh feelz.

1:01:07 — The Outtake

cover art by J.R. Blackwell 

Find us on Twitter at either Tee’s or Pip’s account,
leave us a voicemail or question for the show at 703.791.1701,
or leave us a comment here at the blog.
Enjoy the ride
and we’ll catch you later.

 

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Episode #26: On the Growing World of the Ministry and eBooks Deconstructed

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We’re making eBooks. We’re making print books. We’re gaming. And we’re winning Parsecs! We’re talking about what we’ve learned in creating Ministry Protocol, and we’re going into the details of putting together a great looking eBook. Hang on for this crash course in InDesign, digital publishing, and what to expect when your eBook is ready…for testing.

Also, in light of this unexpected Parsec win, Tee and Pip give shout-outs and thank you’s to everyone keeping tabs on the bumpy year-so-far that has been 2013.

00:00 — Introduction

13:40 — eBooks Deconstructed 
  • The eBooks are done and we are now working on the final details for the print
  • Pip goes through her workflow in making the 99-Penny Dreadfuls (and other works we produce) into ePubs
    • Keep your fonts simple.
    • Formatting. Not a good idea.
    • Short stories are a piece of cake compared to a novel or anthology.
    • Rethinking the workflow
  • The challenges of eBooks and digital reading devices
    • Control is in the readers’ hands, not the publisher.
    • Each ereader handles the source file differently.
  • Tee’s workflow for eBooks and print books
    • First stop — Adobe InDesign, Tee’s weapon of choice.
    • Next stop — Calibre, as InDesign was squirrelly about exporting something to Kindle.
    • What Tee prefers: a file per chapter as opposed to one massive file. Insane? Well….
    • Creating a Book file in InDesign: why it works so well.
    • Tee’s fastest turnaround time: 24 hours (for Pip, actually…)
  • The difference between eBooks and print books — personality.
  • Workflow, Part Two
    • Create two copies of the InDesign files, label one “PRINT” and the other collection “DIGITAL”
    • In the DIGITAL folder, use “Find Font” and remove all instances of “unique” fonts.
    • Times New Roman — the “go to” font for eBooks.
  • Tee’s looking ahead with Weather Child, re-worked by Pip and edited by Tee Tate.
  • Before you release your eBook, test it on as many platforms as possible.
  • And after you do test it, test again! Otherwise, your eBooks can wind up like George R.R. Martin’s…and not in a good way.

35:03 — Writers Off the Clock

  • Hard to believe Pip is a two-time Parsec-winning podcaster…
  • Tee, Pip and the Boom head out to Comics and Gaming of Gainesville, VA.
    • Great place, and kid-friendly!
    • Enjoying some “geek parent” moments…
  • Purchasing some games. One is called Planet Steam. (Anyone know this?)
  • A COOL DISCOVERY — Pacific Rim: Shuffling the Deck
  • What looks like a gimicky card game actually works as a great game of strategy and concentration.
  • Wait — hold on — is Pip REQUESTING a drop-in?!
  • A great game for fans (or giant robots fighting monsters) of the film that doesn’t get too cutthroat.
  • This game has been Boom-Approved.
  • …and while you’re visiting your local bookstore…

44:35 — The Wrap-Up

  • Lamenting about Dragon*Con. There was some people and things we missed.
  • There was also a lot of things we didn’t miss.
  • Big shout out to Mike seals who made it on live Atlanta news shows!
  • What’s coming soon…
  • And Tee’s got some contract work. w00T!
  • Tee’s waiting to hear from Kindle Worlds on his Valiant Comics novellas.
  • Quick shout-out of condolences for the friends and family of Frederick Pohl.
  • Works in progress for both Tee and Pip
  • Another shout-out — this one, a warm fuzzy — to Steampunk India.
  • Thanks, everyone, for keeping us in your hearts this year.
  • And Tee gets cocky…
 
Find us on Twitter at either Tee’s or Pip’s account,
leave us a voicemail or question for the show at 703.791.1701,
or leave us a comment here at the blog.
Enjoy the ride
and we’ll catch you later.

 

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Episode #25: An Audience with Alex White, Master Collaborator

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Tee and Pip pull off the miracle podcast and reach NUMBER 25, but they don’t do it alone. From the headquarters of The Gearheart comes Renaissance Man Alex White. He’s an artist. He’s a writer. He’s a musician. He’s brought so much of his talent to the Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences, and now he comes on mic with The Shared Desk to talk about how he got his black belt in collaboration fu.

00:00 — Introduction

  • Tee goes with a HBO theme on the opening drop-in’s…
  • Welcoming a special guest, Alex White, who is in town…because he wants to be!
  • What’s going on with the three of us?
    • Pip’s turning in new pitches. (Titles need a bit of work…)
    • Tee’s closing in on his Kindle Worlds’ deadline.
    • Alex has a new work-in-progress that delves into the paranormal.
  • Paying authors: We think it’s fun!
7:29 — An Audience with Alex White, Master Collaborator
  • Apart from Jack Mangan, Alex White has contributed and collaborated with us the most concerning the Ministry.
  • Alex and the crew of Disasterpiece Theatre
    • What’s the pitch? (Not the show, but that is the show.)
    • It was a great show…until Shia LaBouff was brought into the Ministry.
    • What’s the fun in prepping your guests?
    • Be careful, Alex. Hollywood, SyFy, and Michael Bay is listening…
    • …and Tee goes there. “Inappropriate.”
  • The recent collaboration(s) between Alex and the Makers of the Ministry
  • On working with Tee Morris and Pip Ballantine, the editors
    • The importance of editing
    • Making editors into the “bad guys”
  • On working with Tee Morris and Pip Ballantine, cover art clients
    • We got a beautiful cover….
    • ….but it was a tough journey getting there.
    • RELEASE THE DROP-IN’S!!!
    • Revealing what’s behind the curtain when cover artists and clients work together…and when things are not what are expected.
    • Beware the “sternly-worded nut-slap” from Pip Ballantine.
    • And then came the back pedal…
  • Working with Friends: the Pros, the Cons, and the LARGE AMOUNTS OF MONEY EXCHANGING HANDS… 
  • Again, beware Pip’s sternly slap-to-the-nuts.
  • Alex gives some advice for the author when working together to create the cover you want.

39:18 — Seriously? Seriously.

  • Alex reveals a cold, hard truth about The Shared Desk.
  • Talking about trust — how about that Cuckoo’s Calling book?
  • Hold on…who’s writing this book again?!
  • QUICK LOO BREAK!
  • Should J.K. Rowling be pissed?
  • A look at the insecurity of a successful problem…and how we wish we had it…
  • You hire a lawyer with a degree of privacy in mind.
  • The dangers of when besties get together, whippin’ out their secrets….
  • …and Tee goes there. Again.

47:24 — The Wrap-Up

  • Big props to Alex White for joining us on the 25th show!
  • Alex made us love him all over again.
  • Alex White and Harvey Keitel — worth every penny!
  • What’s coming soon…
    • For Alex
      • Dragon*Con appearing, including a LIVE Disaterpiece Theatre
      • A possible BIG reveal for DTP fans
      • Catch him at the Parsecs as Fire in the Snow by Starla Hutchton is in the running….
    • For Pip & Tee
      • Authors After Dark
      • Baltimore Book Festival
      • Strasburg Steam Festival
      • Cover Reveal of Ministry Protocol — August 8!
      • And an unexpected sale that is coming to bookshelves for the holidays!
  • And how about this for an ending — hitting it on all cylinders!!!

RELATED LINKS

 
Find us on Twitter at either Tee’s or Pip’s account,
leave us a voicemail or question for the show at 703.791.1701,
or leave us a comment here at the blog.
Enjoy the ride
and we’ll catch you later.

 

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Episode #24: Collaborating Couples (with Nick & Stacia Kelly)

TSD-back2back_Kelly Holy cow! Two in two weeks?! The deuce, you say! We do say! And it’s a special Shared Desk as we’ve recorded our panel at the Write by the Rails meeting that included a panel discussion with couples that collaborated on their writings. Joined by local authors Nick and Stacia Kelly, Tee and Pip share stories and approaches on how they make a collaboration work and also share advice on how to keep collaborations successful.

00:00 — Introduction

  • Flying solo in the opening…
  • Throwing in a special episode without making it special…
  • Hooking up with Nick and Stacia Kelly (and yeah, Tee trips up on her name a bit in the introduction…)
  • Quick Announcement — Tee & Pip will be working the York County Library on JULY 30!!! 
  • Teasing the next special guest for The Shared Desk
2:47 — Collaborating Couples (with Nick & Stacia Kelly)
  • Recording LIVE from the Write by the Rails writing group here in Manassas, VA
  • Sadly, we can’t enact the “Bar Panel” rule here…
  • Who’s on the panel tonight?
  • What’s the collaboration process between us?
    • Stacia got an idea, but wanted to write with her husband, Nick.
    • Nick works more with the nitty-gritty, not so well on the romance…
    • Nic and Stacia discover their differences in how they write.
    • The truth of successful collaboration, and how marrying your writing partner is not the sure-fire solution to a great process.
    • Pip and Tee talk a bit about Discovery Writing.
    • When you do the open idea sessions, all four of us need to write it down!
  • Pip & Tee flinch over the “Red Pen” experience with Harper Voyager.
  • How does collaboration go with people outside the writing experience?
    • Editorial pains
    • Working with cover artists
    • Okay, Tee could get behind the “Hot Tub” sessions….
    • Working on the covers of Kindred & Wings and Dawn’s Early Light
  • When Collaborations go wrong…
    • Stacia stands alone as the writer amongst the experts. Let the madness commence!
    • Tee finally reveals the story behind his first story…and it is as epic as the story itself….
    • Pip’s “bad experience” was actually not that bad.
    • Facing the worst-case scenario as a married couple.
    • The panel goes deep into having an Exit Plan and the importance of communication.
  • Mad props to Delilah S. Dawson for coming through…
  • Unexpected Collaborations
    • Working with book bloggers on blog tours
    • Collaborating with other authors in your worlds
    • Spending some quality time on Jack Mangan and his influence on The Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences….
  • What you need for a solid collaboration — Trust, Communications, and an Editorial Timeline

40:45 — Questions from the Audience

  • How do you divide responsibilities between yourselves?
    • Pip and Tee evolve their collaborative process from when they went from a podcast-for-pay to a series from Harper Voyager and Ace.
    • Pip & Tee’s biggest argument
    • Stacia makes Nick put on a “special suit” for working out fight scenes.
    • Nick breaks down their writing process using a musical analogy.
  • How did Pip and Tee first meet?
    • Meeting online
    • Everybody wanted to collaborate with Tee because…
    • The open honesty from New Zealand
  • Do you all do your own editing?
    • Why hiring an editor is so important.
    • Stacia’s editing resource — http://autocrit.com
    • But you should still edit your own drafts before going to an editor.
    • When is the editing done?
    • The little discoveries when you go deep into editing
    • What an editor should never say to a writer…
  • How many Beta Readers do you have?
    • What to expect from Beta Readers
  • What are you doing when you’re not writing?
    • It’s a wide field of expertise.
    • Tee’s suggestion: A social media panel for writers (with a quick tangent on John Scalzi)
    • A quick discussion on Hootsuite and other strategies in social media
  • ….and that’s all from us here at Write By the Rails!
 
Find us on Twitter at either Tee’s or Pip’s account, leave us a voicemail or question for the show at 703.791.1701, or leave us a comment here at the blog.
Enjoy the ride
and we’ll catch you later.

 

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Episode #23: A Writer’s Kit and Giveaway Swag

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Newly acquired drop-in’s. A flashback to the days of The Survival Guide. A movie review, and Pip’s bunk moment with Idris Elba. Get ready for another episode of The Shared Desk where Tee and Pip go into convention and book signing preparation. What do you carry with you from appearance to appearance?

00:00 — Introduction

  • Holy Moses, two episodes in one month?!
  • Pip’s having a ‘Driis Moment….
  • Three weeks have gone by…
    • Katie and Heather have come and gone…
    • Pip’s on a blog tour…
    • Book release on book release from Fort Kickass!
    • Tee’s switching gears with Kindle Worlds and writing for Bloodshot.
    • Kickstarter anthology is now in layout phase…
    • …and we’d better get the look of the eBook right, otherwise we bring the wrath of Lou Anders!
  • Busy, busy three weeks!

8:20 — The Writer’s Kit and Freebies for Fans

  • Stepping back into the (too-loud) T.A.R.D.I.S. to journey back to the days of The Survival Guide to Writing Fantasy
  • How do we pack for a trip? (Following the advice of Chuck Wendig…)
  • A quick tangent for Johnny Depp and his focused crazy in Bat Country.
  • What are you keeping your kit in? Here’s ours…
    photo
  • What is in our Kit?
    • The Square (Oh how Tee loves the Square…)
    • Starting cash and change (roughly $30)
    • Pens, pens, and pens…and a Sharpie.
    • A stylus for the Square
    • Lucky Charms (not the cereal, but the mascots that travel with you…)
    • Lanyard 101
    • Hand sanitizer
    • Carmex. Best — lip balm — EVAR!
    • Wisps. Just in case you indulge in the garlic hummus in the Green Room right before your signing…
  • What’s your giveaway swag?
    • Your swag may vary, but put some thought into your giveaway items.
    • Book cover buttons
    • Bookmarks
    • Business cards, and making the most of the design
    • Post It notes
    • Postcards for friends of the Ministry
  • Where and when do you take your kit?
  • Prioritizing your freebies (with approval from the kitteh) — What do you get first, and how much do you invest?
  • Clever swag vs. bad swag vs. “You spent how much on that?!”

31:44 — Writers Off the Clock

  • Pip needs to remember what our bumpers sound like…
  • Here comes the spoilers and the geekgasm that is…
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  • Tee demanded giant robots kicking the crap out of robots, and del Toro delivers.
  • Kick back for some love from us for the ‘Dris.
  • Why IMAX 3-D really works for Pacific Rim
  • The plot summary…
  • PIP RAGE: Mako is a STRONG FEMALE CHARACTER…and enjoying a memory of ‘Dris.
  • Chuck Wendig’s review of Pacific Rim — a nice sum-up.
  • Comparing Armageddon and the redeux of Godzilla against Pacific Rim
  • Applying attention to the details
  • del Toro made this film a fun homage to Godzilla and anime.
  • Jack Mangan: Best Pacific Rim review EVAR!

46:22 — The Wrap-Up

RELATED LINKS
Find us on Twitter at either Tee’s or Pip’s account,
leave us a voicemail or question for the show at 703.791.1701,
or leave us a comment here at the blog.
Enjoy the ride
and we’ll catch you later.

 

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The Shared Desk — Episode #17: Ending a Series

Deadlines, distractions, and…something else that starts with D…but who cares? WE’RE BACK and we’re kicking off August with news about the Parsec Awards, where we will be this month, and that time when you have to say “Goodbye” to the worlds you have created.

00:00 — Introduction

  • Since when is “17″ a landmark?
  • What the hell is Pip thinking about stepping on my drop-in’s?!
  • Whodathunkit? We’re a Parsec Finalist for 2012!!! (And we blanked on the good people at Roundtable Podcast! Don’t hate the game, bros — hate the playas!)
  • Flashing back to sharing the desk with P.J. Schnyder

02:47 — Ending a Series

  • Pip is gearing up for the big goodbye to the characters of Geist.
  • What are the feelings an author harbors when writing that final scene in a series?
  • Pip compares ending her adventures with Sorcha, Raed, and Merrick against her adventures with Shakespeare and Puck.
  • How (and why) do authors grow so attached to their characters?
  • Is this the end of Pip’s journey with The Order, or just this generation?
  • How do authors plan a series? Well, a lot it hinges on the contracts.
  • Wow…Tee is kinda quiet….at least, with his comments. (The drop-in’s on the other hand…)
  • What about the Ministry? Well, if Pip gets her way…
  • Searching for the sweet spot in a series length.
  • Looking at The Dark Knight Rises from a writer’s perspectives.
  • When you wrap-up, how do you handle loose ends? Bloodbaths?
  • Suddenly, Pip’s Ace pixie-like editor sounds like a mobster.
  • THE GEM FROM PIP: When do you know you’re done? (And here’s Pip’s answer…at 16:22…)

16:50 — Writing Advice from Crazy Uncle Charlie

  • Taking questions from Twitter for Crazy Uncle Charlie…
  • From @PaperBullets
    • How do you make sure you’re showing, not telling?
    • What are your suggestions for writing peyote-fueled dream sequences?
    • Charlie goes deep into the philosophy of writers and the mantra of “Show, Not Tell”…
    • …but when it comes to the peyote, Charlie keeps it brief.
  • From @Goochi26
    • I finally finished my book, what do i do now?
    • Charlie shares his own little rituals (and maybe PVC fetish) when finishing a manuscript.

21:58 — The Wrap-Up

RELATED LINKS
Find us on Twitter at either Tee’s or Pip’s account,
leave us a voicemail or question for the show at 703.791.1701,
or leave us a comment here at the blog.
Enjoy the ride
and we’ll catch you later.

 

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The Shared Desk — Episode #15: The Listener Appreciation Show (Volume 2)

Call in with your questions and comments!

WOW! We collected enough comments, questions, and overall opinions from you, the listeners, to make this show our second Listener Appreciation Show! We got some questions on Kindle, Scrivener, and Book Reviews, but we also got questions on topics we have never tackled before on mic.

And Pip gets not one but TWO drop-in’s of her own…

00:00 — Introduction

  • A quick shout out to Geek Radio Daily for their own touch on the show…
  • Even more of YOUR CALLS, YOUR EMAILS, YOUR SOCILA NETWORK COMMENTS! 
  • Yeah, Tee is showing the kind of love that only Soundboard can truly deliver.
  • …and the Shared Desk Voicemail Line for the next one — 703.791.1701

04:30 —  Your Voicemail and Email

  • Guy Barber from Cornwall, UK, sends us kudos for the audio version of HarperAudio’s Phoenix Rising and The Shared Desk, and puts in his vote for an audio version of Geist.
  • Ben from Florida asks close on the same question as emails from Valkyrie Page and Chris Forshner on how we collaborate and the creative process between the two of us.
    • Tee talks about Pip’s strengths and then discusses his own.
    • How other authors collaborate against what Pip and Tee do.
  • Melissa Hay surprises us with a call, and brings up the topic of book bloggers and how authors and publishers are keeping the peace, at least for now…
  • Terry Arman asks us what we thought of the promo he cut for us…but has us at a loss.
  • Nobilis Reed wants to know how we collaborate using Scrivener.
  • P.C. Haring Calls “Shenanigans!” on our Scrivener…and we call him to the mat with some help from Phil Rossi!
  • David from the Scrivener Crew writes us a killer “thank you” note.
  • Our Anonymous NYT Bestseller gives inside dirt on Amazon and their own titles…
    • Pip finds herself derailed by her bumper and a lack of breakfast.
    • Is there anyone “big enough” to stand toe-to-toe with Amazon? Well, yes
    • More discussion about Amazon, and a shameless plug for The Janus Affair
  • Rick Asplund calls in to give us BVL (big Viking love) from Chicago.
  • Dan Dan the Artman drops a voicemail that calls forth the humbled (and slightly vaklempt) Crazy Uncle Charlie.
  • Michael Spence mainlines The Shared Desk and gives his own opinions on shared universes.
  • Tony Mast takes Tee to task for releasing Aladdin and His Wonderfully Infernal Device for the Kindle exclusively.
  • Gail Carrigerwants to know what the “Shared Desk” really looks like……so here it is:

  • And from the Great White North comes Steve Saylor, asking of working with video to promote your writing.

1:03:03 — The Wrap-Up

  • The Second Listener Appreciation Show is DONE, and now we need your comments for Show #20!
  • Hunger may be pushing Pip closer to PIP RAGE!!! 
  • Where to leave your comments for us…
  • April 10 — Volume 2 of Tales from the Archives goes live!
  • Tee’s cheat-sheet is swiped from him…but he nails the Creative Commons exit.
Some Related Links
Find us on Twitter at either Tee’s or Pip’s account,
leave us a voicemail or question for the show at 703.791.1701,
or leave us a comment here at the blog.
Enjoy the ride
and we’ll catch you later.

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The Shared Desk — Episode #011: Concerning Reviews

 

Bleah! Between the Power Bug that Sonic Boom brought home from school and final reviews of The Janus Affair, Tee and Pip are finally back behind the mic, bringing a perspective on book bloggers, book reviews, and keeping it classy in light of a bad review.

00:00 — Introduction

  • We’re back! (Did you miss us?)
  • The joys of school-bred viruses
  • The Janus Affair is now heading to press.
  • What to expect from Wellington Eliza, and friends in the next few months…
  • A plea to whomever sent me the drop-in’s.
  • Working on steampunk faerie tales
  • Elder Cat says “Oh hai!”

08:01 — Concerning Reviews

  • We’d love to do a show on Scrivener, but writers (and now agents) keep doing some really stupid things!  
  • Elder Cat says “Oh hai!” again
  • Goodreads — an online network that loves Phoenix Rising.
  • It all started with a review…or two….
  • …and it ended with agents getting into the scrap.
  • Rule #1 of Reviews: Not everyone will love you.
  • How bad behavior affects your book
    • Tee still hasn’t read The Night Circus on account of spam.
    • The Tom Cruise Effect
    • How bad reviews reflect positively on authors’ works
  • An Authors’ WTH Moment: When Agents Attack
  • Respecting the Book Bloggers
  • How Book Bloggers Stand Taller than Amazon/Goodreads Reviewers
  • If you don’t want an honest review, don’t approach Book Bloggers.
  • Taking the fight to other networks like Twitter, Facebook, et. al.
  • When is it a good time to question a bad review?
  • Looking for common threads in good and bad reviews
  • Why you must love Book Bloggers…like our girl, Mel!

33:58  — Writers Off the Clock

  • Hold on — Tee’s got a WotC for Pip?
  • The name of the game is Skylanders…and we bought it for Sonic Boom. (No. Really. We did!)
  • A friend of Starla’s. A friend of ours. And her (bad) influence on the Boom…
  • Sonic Boom was fighting back, so we were looking for and advantage. (In comes Skylanders.)
  • And at 38:02, this happens…
  • What Skylanders is all about
  • How Sonic Boom plays into this new obsession
  • Feline distractions
  • Laying down the Law (and enjoying the results)

44:39 — The Wrap-Up

Find us on Twitter at either Tee’s or Pip’s account,
leave us a voicemail or question for the show at 703.791.1701,
or leave us a comment here at the blog.
Enjoy the ride
and we’ll catch you later.

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The Shared Desk — Episode #10: The Listener Appreciation Show

Call in with your questions and comments!

As promised — kicking off a new year of podcasting — is comments, questions, and overall opinions all from you the listeners. Tee & Pip present the first (hopefully of many) Shared Desk Listener Appreciation show where they get questions on worldbuilding, character choices, and requests for more drop-in’s.

There’s a even a quick “hello” from Crazy Uncle Charlie….

00:00 — Introduction

  • Nobilis Reed, our first voicemail…
  • No normal show segments this time around. This time it is YOUR CALLS, YOUR EMAILS. 
  • Tee tries his best to do his best Flynstress
  • …and the Shared Desk Voicemail Line for the next one — 703.791.1701

02:27 —  Your Voicemail and Email

  • Doc Coleman berates us a bit for finally getting The Shared Desk going, for the lack of a promo, and for handling deadlines.
  • Laura Nicole mainlines the first two Shared Desks, and reminisces about Podcasts of Balticons Past.
  • Tee’s still having a blast with Soundboard, just so you know…
  • Indiana Jim calls in with an EPIC voicemails…and Tee professes his man-love for the intrepid geekologist. He also touches on…
    • Writing in shared universes (where Jim forgets the title of his book, and brings about the wrath of the Sarge…)
    • Tales from the Archives
    • Gaming and it’s place in the Writers’ World.
  • “Cousin George” calls in…and asks Crazy Uncle Charlie about writing for homosexual characters.
  • Nobilis Reed, raps our knuckles for his own reasons…
  • Dan Shaurette asks about Scrivener and inspires the topic of our next show!
  • Ben from Florida calls in and gets a pep talk from Crazy Uncle Charlie and the Mason Jar of Winning.
  • Indiana Jim provides validation for Tee’s love of the drop-in’s.
  • Logan Waterman sends in an email and gives Tee & Pip a question about worldbuilding and how deep to go.
    • Pip gives her own work as an example. Is it a horse, or something else?
    • Tee remembers Joe Murphy and Legacy of Morevi.
  • Odin, still new to podcasting, asks about the pros and cons of being your own podcast host.

59:39 — The Wrap-Up

Related Links
Find us on Twitter at either Tee’s or Pip’s account,
leave us a voicemail or question for the show at 703.791.1701,
or leave us a comment here at the blog.
Enjoy the ride
and we’ll catch you later.

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The Shared Desk — Episode #006: New York Comic Con & The Airship Awards


To say that “A lot has happened…” since Episode 5 and now would be a massive understatement. We cover it all in this review of the biggest event we have ever attended. No Writers Off the Clock. No Crazy Uncle Charlie. Just us and a look back on a really eventful two weeks.

00:00 — A Vignette from the Archives

03:21 — Introduction

  • Tee and Pip give a quick shout out to their childhood
  • It’s been a wild ride since the last show…
  • How ’bout them world-champion All Blacks?
  • Pip can truly make a segue happen at a moment’s notice

06:15 — A Wrap-Up of New York Comic Con

  • Where do we begin? Let’s begin with the unexpected, shall we?
    • Pip is officially clean…well, of leprosy.
    • A note to Tee’s day job: There is a different between putting together a Powerpoint presentation and putting together a video presentation.
  • Comic Con— Day One: Hitting the Ground Running So Hard, the Ground Hit Back
    • Here’s what happens when you lose a day in your plans.
    • Tee and Pip arrive to Comic Con, and are surprised as what they find.
  • A quick review at some of the guests on the steampunk panel
  • Our first gripes of Comic Con
    • The location of the Jarvitz Center
    • The Mythical Shuttle (with the crappy schedule)
    • If you’re having a con, make sure you have solid internet access
  • We love our Comic Con HEROES! (These volunteers rocked our world!)
  • Comic Con — Day Two: Follow the Fairy and the Trail of Geeks
  • A good lesson from our travels: PRINT OUT agendas, maps, etc. Don’t count on Internet access.
  • Comic Con: A Circle of ADD Hell
  • Pip’s signing at Ace…and her second rock star moment for the weekend…
  • Comparing New York Comic Con to Dragon*Con
  • What you would have found at the Fables of the Flying City booth…
  • OPERATION: GUILD GEEKOUT
    • The unexpected surprise — Sandeep Parikh
    • On the choice celebs make in stating “No Candid Photos” at the cons
    • What we wrote in the hardbound edition of Phoenix Rising (which quoted The Guild)
    • Pip fangrrls all over Felicia…and makes me look like a chump.
    • Yes, Pip is damn cute when she fangrrls. Especially with Felicia Day.
    • Geeking out on Dragon Age: Redemption and Felicia Day’s kickassery
  • Pip’s “Winter is Here” panel: brushing by Felicia Day, a SRO panel, and a well-moderated panel
  • Why Pip and Tee may sound a little tired…
  • Another gripe of New York Comic Con: No “decompression chamber” for the guests.
  • Banging interviews at Comic Con
  • So was that enough excitement for a month? No, not yet…

37:01  — The 2011 Airship Awards

  • Wait. Hold on. What did Starla just tweet?
  • What exactly are The Airship Awards?
  • The Nominations for the 2011 Airship Awards for Best in Literature
    • The Curious Case of Spring-Heeled Jack (a Philip K. Dick Award-winner)
    • Camera Obscura
    • The Half-Made World
    • …and us.
  • From the Airship Ambassador, confirmation — K.W. Jeter accepted the award for us
  • This award is dead sexy.
  • And with New York Comic Con and the Airship win behind us, what’s it all mean?
    • What to keep in mind when you win an award
    • Some thank you’s
    • Humbling moments from Comic Con
    • Our hopes for 2012
    • Another bit of advice: Prepare to network on the way home…
  • Can we take a breath now?

46:23 — The Wrap-Up

  • Nope…we’re not done, but thanks for asking!
  • Heading out to Los Angeles for BlogWorld: L.A. to talk podcasting, and then Pip and I get our punk on at ComiKazie Expo
  • Looking forward to hanging with the ragamuffins of steampunk, The League of S.T.E.A.M.
  • Then maybe — maybe — we can take a breath!
  • We’re putting together a list for 2012
    • RavenconYES
    • BalticonYES
    • Dragon*Con — YES
    • If you want us at your con, let’s talk.
  • Where to find us online

More Shout-Out’s During the Show…

Find us on Twitter at either Tee’s or Pip’s account,
leave us a voicemail or question for the show at 703.791.1701,
or leave us a comment here at the blog.
Enjoy the ride
and we’ll catch you later.

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The Shared Desk #003: The Strategy for eBooks

Fresh from their WorldCon experience, Tee & Pip bring to The Shared Desk their first interview and introduce a new segment to the show. There is also talk of their next con appearance and what lies ahead for the Fall.

00:00 — Introduction

  • Tee reflects on his days in radio…and when he needed to pee.
  • Still free-forming it, and it’s WINNING!

01:24 — The Strategy with eBooks: What Tee & Pip Are Planning, and Why

  • In Reno, the Agent Savant herself, Laurie McLean, challenges us to develop a digital strategy
  • Pip is hardly a stranger to eBooks with Chasing the Bard and Digital Magic
  • People thought the earthquake caused the damage at Washington Cathedral…
  • The evolution of eBooks, starting with MOREVI’s EPPIe nomination
  • Calling “Shenanigans!” on changes in contracts, sales reports, and pricing.
  • The painful experience of reading eBooks (then again, it could have been the book I chose…)
  • 9:56 — Pip’s calls Tee out (and since Tee said “You’re right…” he sleeps soundly.)
  • Technology’s offerings for eBooks
  • What really happens at Pip’s “Card Night”…
  • eBooks from the authors’ point-of-view
  • The appeal of a 99¢ short story
  • The method within our eBook madness
  • An iTunes approach to anthologies
  • What is a 99-Penny Dreadful?
  • Digital publishing — the new market for short stories and novellas?

29:01 — Seriously? Seriously.

  • A new trend in authors marketing themselves as BESTSELLING AUTHORS
  • When Scott Sigler called himself a “bestseller” before he hit the New York Times Bestseller List
  • When authors abuse or cheapen the “Bestseller” title
  • Why we don’t call ourselves “bestsellers” (even though we could)
  • Other titles that authors throw around alongside “bestselling”
  • Put up, or shut up!

36:34 — Writers Off the Clock: High School of the Dead

  • An import from Japan has grabbed our attention…
  • What past ladies in Tee’s life thought of anime
  • In High School of the Dead, the T&A in the opening credits also happens in the anime!
  • We’re not hung up over sex, but we are distracted.
  • Tee’s defines “alternative anime,” and compares it to the mainstream.
  • Now for the good news — High School of the Dead is Walking Dead good.
  • A good anime series, but be prepared…

47:44 — The Wrap-Up

  • This show is just getting easier and easier…and time flies!
  • Where you can find our 99-Penny Dreadfuls
  • NEXT SHOW: Special Guest P.C. Haring, in studio with us to talk about writing in other authors’ universes
  • Counting down to FenCon (September 23-25,2011)
  • Get details about schedules, tweet up’s, and such at Tee’s and Pip’s Facebook Group pages
  • Are there tiki bars in Texas?
  • Where you can find us (and even our steampunk characters) online for feedback and questions for Crazy Uncle Charlie

Websites We Give a Shout-Out to

Find us on Twitter at either Tee’s or Pip’s account,
leave us a voicemail or question for the show at 703.791.1701,
or leave us a comment here at the blog.
Enjoy the ride
and we’ll catch you later.

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