Tuesday, April 16, 2019

UNCAGED BOOK REVIEWS MAGAZINE IS KIND ENOUGH TO HAVE BLAZE MCROB AS A FEATURE AUTHOR FOR THEIR APRIL ISSUE


https://issuu.com/cyreneolson/docs/uncaged_book_reviews_april19?e=25448873/68812654

https://fangfreakintasticreviews.com/?fbclid=IwAR1co711HTrvZVijyddMXoCmlovW54lxVJ1XXRh6iGl47sAeWLK8Izzx7qM



I am super proud and happy to be one of the featured authors in Uncaged Book Reviews Magazine for April, 2019! I'm in the section that Fang Freakin Tastic Reviews has up in the magazine. My friend Melanie Bingle Marsh, editor of Fang Freakin Tastic Reviews, asked me if I would like to join in on the fun, so I naturally said yes. Melanie is a multiple Woman In Horror, by the way. I would like to thank Melanie and Cyrene Olson, the editor of Uncaged Book Reviews.

The book that is featured is my horror novel Mists Of Papoose Pond. The magazine is free, so you can read the first chapter of my novel and take a look at what some other great authors have for you!

Blaze McRob  

Thursday, April 11, 2019

OWL'S EYE VIEW MAGAZINE - VOLUME 10 - ISSUE 2 - BY TERRI DELCAMPO


https://books2read.com/u/4AJ2ao

The latest issue of Owl's Eye View Magazine, by Terri Delcampo, is now published. Volume 10 - Issue 2 has an action-packed, fearful issue of horror for those who relish the ooky and the spooky that Terri is famous for. Swooping Through The Years, Visceral Verse, Macabre Mirth, and more are in this issue. You don't want to miss this one! I believe this issue has quite a Gothic lean to it. 

Blaze McRob

Magazine description:

Owl's Eye View Magazine is a dark fiction quarterly featuring columns, poetry, and short stories written by Terri DelCampo and "Columnists" who are in fact her ongoing fictitious characters.

Tuesday, April 9, 2019

THROWBACK TUESDAY - MOVIE REVIEW FOR - BUG - BY TERRI DELCAMPO



The movie review below is done by Terri DelCampo. However, I am the one who suggested she watch it. To add in my thoughts: I totally agree with Terri.
Blaze McRob
BUG is a classic horror movie. Chills!,
July 5, 2015
By
Terri DelCampo
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: BUG (1975) (DVD)
Awesome old movie! Love it. Creepy and had me scratching. Muahaha!

Sunday, March 31, 2019

CAMP NANOWRIMO STARTS TOMORROW FOR TERRI DELCAMPO & BLAZE MCROB


Terri DelCampo and I will both be busy in April. Camp NaNoWriMo demands our attention. I'm not 100% sure what Terri is going to write. I'll let you know as soon as she gives me the word. As for me, I have changed my mind as to what I want to write. Originally, I was going to write a fantasy with no bad words in it. I've decided I'm not up to keeping my language in check at the moment, so I will write a horror/adventure/love story, of a different kind. Hmm. It will also have military/political and survivalist goodies included. I will stir everything up and see what happens. Dang me anyway!

Happy reading, my friends, and for those of you who are also writing for Camp NaNoWriMo, have fun and keep me posted on how you're doing.

Blaze McRob 

Sunday, March 24, 2019

REALISTIC EXPECTATIONS FOR YOUR BOOKS


I've written a number of posts explaining some things authors can do to not only market their books but how to get recognized to begin with. Part of what I said has covered pro-markets, those paying five cents a word or more. Twenty words and you have a dollar in your pocket. Not too shabby. There are also semi-pro rates between a penny a word up to the pro-rates. Still better than splitting royalties. And, there are presses paying $25.00 a story or more. Maybe that's not equal to the others, but you are assured of making money.

So what's the point of this post, you ask? I am in a number of groups where authors discuss which way to go. Some want to hold out for the higher rates instead of self-pubbing or going for anything below pro-rates. Makes sense to me. However, and I'm certain to make some enemies here, your manuscripts had better be polished or you don't deserve it. If an editor reads your story, scratches his head, and says, "What the fuck?,"  you're out of the game.

Another thing: a lot of authors complain they're not being treated right by publishers. In a lot of cases they're not. However, to complain your book is not selling when you do nothing at all to help promote it, expecting the publisher to do it all, is totally ridiculous. I no longer publish any books for other authors. Yes, I still help out with edits and marketing for some people, but it is strictly gratis. My wife and I publish for ourselves only. We do all the work, knowing what it entails.

Most authors have no idea what it costs to get a book published.  A Press has to pay for editing, cover art, formatting, copies for the authors, and marketing. It adds up. If a lazy author doesn't help with their own marketing,  the Press loses. Big time.

So, my friends, stop bitching and chomp down on some facts. You must write a great story; it must be edited well; and you damn well better help to promote it. If you don't do all these things, your manuscript is no better than last week's garbage.

Thanks for reading.


Blaze McRob

Thursday, March 21, 2019

SOME THINGS ARE FLAT OUT WRONG


I don't mention it too often, although I say certain things in my short stories and novels about it, but when I returned back to the United States after fighting in 'Nam in 1966 and 1967, many of us returning Veterans were treated like dog-shit by a great many of the citizens here. I was shocked. It made no sense to me. Damned hippies were attacking limbless vets in wheelchairs with their baby-killer signs when I got off the plane in San Francisco. I completely lost it and grabbed their signs from them and beat the living shit out of the bastards before the MP's came and escorted me to a safe place in the airport. Safe for the hippies, I reckon.

The reason I bring this up is I ran across some reviews of Ken Burns' Vietnam documentary. I watched all of them when they came out and completely hated them. I had expected a fair, all-sides view of the war, but it was slanted towards the far left group. Horrible. Just horrible. I won't bother to give links to some of the many people and publications who hated the documentary. Any Google search will find plenty of them for you.

For two years, I was the President of the Vietnam Veterans of America chapter in Cheyenne, Wyoming. I wrote the chapter newsletter and a number of editorials for the Wyoming Tribune Eagle about military and Veterans matters. For the most part, it was time well spent. The community was on our side about most things. I did get a bit of joking that our organization would die out some day when there were no more Vietnam Veterans living. That is true, but, then again, it's a shame that the other organizations dealing with wounded Veterans are still needed.

The one thing that I like is that organizations - the VFW, American Legion, and many others - band together and work for the Veterans. The one thing I don't like is that a five time draft dodger is supposedly running the country and puts political cronies in positions of trust at the VA. And the current thinking with him? Getting the Veterans out of the system at the VA and wanting to have them get the same health-care that everyone else gets. Not me. I'm happy with the VA. It's not perfect, but neither is any non-military hospital that I know of. Not everyone agrees with me on this issue, but that's their right, and lest I forget to mention it, if you're not a Veteran, then you have no say in the matter.

As long as I'm on my soap-box, I've had many people come up to me and tell me how they were wrong about their actions and stance on the war in 'Nam and try to apologize for them. For me, they're fifty two years too late. I don't forget when I came home, and I don't forgive easily. Pretty much, I tell every one who tells me that to shove their apologies up their a . . !

Short, direct, and to the point. I'll end here. For now.

Blaze McRob   

Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Reading Horror Can Arm Us Against A Horrifying World


https://www.npr.org/2018/08/05/635052036/reading-horror-can-arm-us-against-a-horrifying-world

This is a well-written article by Ruthanna Emrys on National Public Radio. I totally agree with what she has to say, and it's not because I'm a horror author. I know the article is not completely directed at children, but horror is good for them in the same way it is for adults. Go back in time to the old fairy tales and you certainly don't see a lot of fluffy lambies. This spinning rock we're on is not a paradise. Tough lessons are learned along the way.

As the author says:

"Horror as a genre is built around one truth: that the world is full of fearful things. But the best horror tells us more. It tells us how to live with being afraid. It tells us how to distinguish real evil from harmless shadows. It tells us how to fight back. It tells us that we can fight the worst evils, whether or not we all survive them — and how to be worthy of having our tales told afterward."

Ruthanna Emrys presents her case quite well.


Blaze McRob

Sunday, March 17, 2019

MOST HAUNTED PLACES IN WYOMING


https://www.hauntedplaces.org/state/Wyoming

I lived in Wyoming for quite some time, and have visited a number of the places on this list that the kind folks at Haunted Places.org have found. My favorite two are the haunted tunnels in Cheyenne, and much supernatural activity that can be found on Francis E. Warren Air Force Base just to the west of Cheyenne.

The big, friendly signs that welcome you to Wyoming don't mention the fascinating haunts to be found in this big, beautiful state. But, for those of us looking for a little excitement, this is a grand state to visit.

Blaze McRob 


Wednesday, March 13, 2019

THROWBACK THURSDAY - CIVILITY - BY BLAZE MCROB


I wrote parts of this post a while back, and I’m extending it out for the second time. I tend to get highly agitated by some people. I don’t mind folks having a difference of opinion from mine. That’s their right. But for them to get rude is an entirely different thing.

There are a lot of inconsiderate people popping up in the various groups on Facebook and elsewhere lately. I'm concerned mainly with writers groups. As an example, one author posted her book cover of a soon to be published novel. This should have been a happy time for her, right? It wasn't. Some guy blasted her over it saying it was horrible. I remembered him posting other things of the like in the past. He's rather opinioned, rude, and it seems he sells book covers. Hmm. I checked his credentials and didn't think his covers were all that good. My opinion, of course. Other authors said the same thing. Their covers were also not worth bragging about in my eyes. They were not horrible, but not great either. One guy liked the cover the woman had. Me? I also liked the cover. Obviously, beauty is in the eyes of the beholder. Unless you just wish to bring someone down, that is.

The same thing can be found with people finding flaws with formatting, editing, and much more. People come out of the woodwork to attack their peers. Wow! Why? No one is perfect. Remember that. As a rule of thumb, read the free sample on Amazon for a book and base your decision on that.

I am an editor as well as an author. As such, I see some great work and some that is lacking. Thank goodness I don't have to tell individuals when their work is not up to par. Another person handles that part. When I review a book for someone I only give 5Star or 4Star reviews. If the work doesn't warrant such I don't bother to leave a review. If the author knows I've read the book and asks me about it, I'll tell her/him in private. Yes, I get some authors who tell me I'm wrong, but I don't care. They asked, and I told them.

Another thing that irritates me are people with high noses who have won many awards and try to lord it over the authors they consider to be beneath them. Sorry, people. I read for the content and not the celebrity. In fact, there are many authors who people love that I just can't get into. Their tastes; my tastes. No one is right or wrong. Also, there is still some stigma attached to self-published authors and their books. There shouldn't be. A good book is a good book. Plain and simple. We don't need gate-keepers anymore. Those days are over.

I suggest that if you want to say something to help out a fellow author that you do it in private and do it in a constructive manner. Otherwise, keep your mouth shut. There's too much negativity in this world today.

One of my author friends was attacked by about one hundred people who objected to the cover of her book and said some vile things online. I won’t mention the author or explain the cover, but these retards stepped over the line with their threats and insults. This was from supposedly God-fearing people on some agenda. We don’t need attacks from these self-righteous clowns.

Another thing that came to my attention was a major attack which happened on a large Facebook group. This is supposedly a responsible group which is not tolerant of writers being slammed because of color, sexual preference, for being anti or pro religion, or gender equality. You get the idea. Everyone appeared to be after everyone else. It got to be quite infantile before it was over. And, for a writers group, there were many illiterate people. That’s another thing I get angry with. If an author posts something, they should put up one with no incorrect words or misspellings. I look at that and never bother to buy their books.

Lately, we are being attacked by authors who steal the work of other authors. This is beyond low! If you can't write on your own, find another business to get into. I've even had this happen to me. A few years ago, I was writing short stories and even novels on my website. Quite by accident, I was watching a TV show which was following one of my novels, almost word for word. I contacted the producers of the show and told them that I would not tolerate this. They said they had no idea this had happened and were very sorry and would look into the matter. Of course, I expected nothing would be done, but to my astonishment the show changed dramatically. It no longer followed my story-line and they said they had fired their script writer. I thanked them and didn't take any more action against them. I took down every short story and the novels I had on my website and have not written any more on my website since then. The one the TV folks stole, I rewrote in a different manner. I would advise anyone who gives short stories away for free on their websites to do as I did. They can easily be stolen there. Remove all of them.

Thank you for reading this. I hope you got something out of it.


 Blaze McRob

Tuesday, March 12, 2019

IDES OF MARCH:AN OWL'S NEST NOVELETTE - BY TERRI DELCAMPO


https://books2read.com/u/b6xveZ

Terri DelCampo's latest book, Ides of March: An Owl's Nest Novelette, is out for your reading pleasure. This is Terri's unique take on the Ides Of March, and I'm sure you'll enjoy it.

Book description:

The Ides of March is known world-wide for disasters occurring on it – the murder of Julius Caesar, a raid on South England in 1360, a cyclone in Samoa in 1889, Czar Nicholas abdicating his throne in 1917, German occupation of Czechoslovakia in 1939, Great Plains blizzard in 1941, cancellation of the Ed Sullivan Show in 1971, reporting of the disappearing ozone layer in 1988, world health alert about the disease SARS in 2003.

Of course, Owl's Nest being Owl's Nest, it has its own take on Ides of March.


Pick up a copy and enjoy the grand tale that Terri has written for you.

Blaze McRob

Monday, March 11, 2019

CAMP NANOWRIMO


I will be returning to Camp NaNoWriMo next month. That means I'll be writing another novel of at least 50,000 words in April. I'll be writing The Enchanted Arch, a Fantasy novel with no bad words in it. Holy cow, Batman! This should be a challenge from potty-mouth me. I want something my younger children, grandchildren, and great grandson can read, or have read to them. I'll keep my readers posted when it's completed. By the way: older readers should enjoy it, as well.

Happy reading!

Blaze McRob 

Thursday, March 7, 2019

EMBRACE THE SUCK - THROWBACK THURSDAY


I originally put this post up last year. I thought I'd put it here again. A lot of folks liked it. Enough for me to make the Top Ten Finisher list for Best Nonfiction article at Critters / Preditors & Editors Readers Poll for 2017.


I was reading the latest copy of UltraRunning magazine and came across an article which stated that to make yourself stronger you must embrace the suck, meaning that a runner should accept the pain and push through it. In one form or another this saying has been around for a long time. I figured that this applies to writing horror as well.

I got caught up too much in the election for president last year. There's not much that I, one person, can do about it. Or is there? I can still write my tales of horror and attack the inherent evil in power and politics. This goes for both sides of the fence. Sad but true: the system is flawed. It sucks at pretty much every level. Deep pockets, hands out, and stupidity abound everywhere.

How about Big Business? They really are the power behind everything. Writers can attack them too. Remember George Orwell? He certainly made some statements about the status quo and what can take place. Turns out he was pretty accurate. Things are moving along that way more every day.

Okay. You have physical pain and other limitations and find it hard to fight back when things roll in on you and attack every inch of your body and wrestle with your mind. What now? Is it time to roll up in a little ball and give up? No. This is the time to fight the hardest. You're an author, damn it! The pain and agony of tough decisions surround you now. That hammer is smashing at your skull, telling you that there is no way for you to go on. Knock the hammer away! Your mind is strong enough to weather the storm. Embrace the suck! Put it to work for you. While others can't handle the stress, the apprehension, and all the other things making life tougher for you, you can do it. Mind over matter. Pen in hand. Fingers on the keyboard. That's all it takes. Use the negativity to channel a path of strength from your brain to your finished works.

Focus on what's important. Getting your hands on the latest techno gadget means crap. Pen and paper still work. You're upset because great reviews aren't flying around and landing on your books while some authors and publishers cheat and scam the system? Don't worry about it. They'll be found out. In the meantime, you will have played it by the rules. Your pride is still intact. People will discover you. It's merely a matter of working harder to get your name out there.


Take all your real and perceived pain and write that book. This is your Holy Grail. Come back with the cup. Terri DelCampo, my wife, was almost killed in an automobile accident a number of years ago. She fought back against the pain and hardships. She not only used the rehab time to get her body back to functioning again, but she started writing with a fervor she never had before. She was not going to allow herself to sink into the depths of despair. No pity me for her. While she still has many physical limitations, she has no mental ones. She achieves because she wants to.

There are a number of people I know who feel we're headed for nuclear war. They worry to the point of obsessing about it constantly. Shit! Back in the fifties, the United States was building bomb shelters right and left. We barely escaped atomic war when the Cuban crisis hit its zenith. Yet, we're still here. Does that mean it won't happen now? Of course not. Nothing is out of the question, but don't waste your time fretting when you could park your ass in a chair and get a story out about it. I'm a pessimist and think humans will botch up everything, but I don't say, "Boo, hoo, woe is me." If it happens, it happens. Prepare yourself as best you can and hope for the best.

Don't listen to people who say that things are worse now than they've ever been for humankind. That's horse shit! The great flood was pretty extreme. WWII, WWI, Genghis Khan, Hitler, our Civil War, and much more were far worse. Let's face it: over the years, there have been many evil people on the planet. We're still here. Some of us don't deserve to be here, but we are.

So, take the bad and use it. Write about it. Purge your mind and soul of it. Tell people about it. Warn them. Be a prophet for good.

You can do it. You merely have to embrace the suck!


Blaze McRob

Tuesday, March 5, 2019

THE SEVEN-YEAR WITCH - BY CINDY KEEN REYNDERS



The Seven-Year Witch, by Cindy Keen Reynders, is now out! Dare I say that this is a charming paranormal witches & wizards romance, with a healthy dollop of fantasy and humor - I love her broom. The elements of horror contained within are quite subtle as everything is in perfect balance. Don't miss this superb novel!

Blaze McRob


Book description:

Novice witch Miranda Rose’s seventh and final task for the Supreme Witch’s Council is to find the legendary Philosopher’s Stone. Once that is achieved, she’ll accomplish her lifelong dream—to become a High Witch of the Wysteria Hedge Haven Clan. In a last-ditch effort to locate the precious gem, she travels through time to 1877.

Hidden within a dilapidated castle tower, Balthazar, a powerful young wizard, refuses to relinquish the stone. In a fit of pique, he zaps Miranda into a field just outside of Merry Olde London.

Sir Maxwell Chadwick is the sole witness to a fiery ball of light streaking across the midnight sky. Curious, he investigates and is surprised to discover a beautiful young woman among the smoldering ashes. Captivated by her alluring beauty, he cannot deny his instant attraction.

As for Miranda, she appreciates the handsome duke’s assistance. However, she finds his well-intentioned interference annoying because it delays her mission. It doesn’t take her long to realize Sir Maxwell holds the key to her heart, as well as her future.

A combination of fate, impractical magic and the Seven-Year Witch disease take the lovers on a rollicking, star-crossed adventure.

Sunday, March 3, 2019

COVER REVEAL FOR - THE MONARCH MISSION FILES: CONSPIRACY - BY JENN NIXON!


SciFi Mystery Romance Cover Reveal for The Monarch Mission Files : Conspiracy @JennNixon
Killjoys meets Helix in Jenn Nixon’s next SciFi series coming this April!
Mari Yosoto has been keeping a dark and dangerous secret from everyone since her life-changing accident. No one would believe the truth anyway, her ex-fiancĂ© had seen to that. Instead of wallowing in misery, she stays busy, shuttling cargo to the Moon and back, enjoying the easy work and time alone. When an old EarthCorps acquaintance asks for her help finding a missing girl on Mars, Mari can’t say no, even if it means working with the ex’s former best friend.
Although Trevor Nash took the Mars job to help his former commanding officer, deep down he needed to see Mari again. After trying and failing to find out what happened to her, Trevor makes the best of an odd situation, hoping he can remind Mari of their budding friendship and finally get answers. When their rescue mission goes sideways and they find the not-so-missing girl, a centuries-old conspiracy theory emerges and the only thing more unfathomable is learning Mari’s secret.
Together with their newly formed ragtag team, Mari and Trevor team up and undertake a mission unlike anything either of them has faced before with life-altering and possibly deadly consequences.
Sneak Peak:
Chapter One

Beep. Mari’s heart thumped so hard her ribcage hurt.

Beep. Beep. She lifted her head, shielding her eyes from the bright lights above her head.

Beep, beep. Beep, beep. There was something wrong with her hand. It didn’t feel right.

A pair of voices echoed from behind her, muffled and indecipherable through the fogginess filling her mind. Half of her body felt numb and cold, the other covered in fiery pins and needles. When she cried out in agonizing pain, the pair of brown eyes that filled her vision seemed familiar.

The accident flashed in her head.

Breathing became impossible.

Beep, beep, beep.

“You’re okay, Mari,” the male voice said, making her heart race faster.

Beep, beep, beep, beep. She lifted her arm, stared at her hand and screamed. “What did you do to me?”


Can’t wait until April? Check out Jenn’s MIND series – you can get book one for FREE!



http://amzn.to/2lDOiuG 


Jenn Nixon


Suspense & SciFi with a Dash of Romance!


Find a new favorite author! Jenn Nixon has plenty of great reading waiting for you!

Blaze McRob

Friday, March 1, 2019

WRITING IS EASY! PUBLISHING IS EASY!


Writing Is Easy! Publishing is easy! What, you ask? How can writing possibly be easy? Writing is one word after another. That's it. There's nothing difficult about that.

Someone in the back is shaking their head, thinking that I'm an idiot. No problem with that. That's his right. He can even leave the room and I won't care.

Ah, you ask. "What are the words?" Again: simple. Put a picture in your head of the story you want to write. Write about that picture. If you have no story in your mind, forget about writing. Writing is easy, but only if you have a tale to spin. I get one simple thought in my brain, many times a sentence, or even a single word. Wham! Go from there.

As an example: in an upcoming novel, I think about my garage. I sleep in the garage because my wife is a bitch. The start of the picture in the gray matter is forming. Other senses come into play. Mice pitter-patter around and they make me think of rats from 'Nam. A presence forms, cutting off my air supply; a moldy stench surrounds it. This is not the first time this has happened, but this time . . . this time something is different. What? It talks to me this time. It never has before.

See what I mean? One word, garage, got into my mind and horror surrounds me. No build up needed. Pure action from the beginning.

Some people will rebel against what I'm saying next. Do not outline! It kills the flow of your story.
Let your tale roll unfettered and free. I never know how my stories will end. That's the fun of writing. Let your story people determine the outcome.

Do not worry about perfection in your first draft. Just write a story that flows. Don't worry about anything else. Hemingway said the first draft of anything is shit. He was right. So concentrate on the story first, and then polish in your next drafts.

Now, your story is done, and a grand tale it is. Except for one thing. It sucks! The story itself is great, but it needs some serious editing. Comma splices abound. There's not enough white space. You have over-used words; you are redundant. Mark in chapter one is Matthew in chapter ten.

Now what? You work on your edits first. Don't annoy your friends and ask them to be beta readers. Do the job yourself. Read your story out loud as you edit. That will help with your commas. Over and over again, do your edits. When you are satisfied you have a good story, send it to an editor. An author is too close to her/his own story to do it justice in the final edits.

Okay, I'm sure many of you have heard the old beta reader thing over and over again from friends. They are not editors. Hire an editor. There are many good ones out there and they will not all gouge you. Many have great rates.

If you are going to self-publish, get a great cover artist. Don't go half-ass here. It is very important. Also, consider doing books with interior art scattered about. It is impressive, and a lot of Publishers are doing it.

Have someone who knows what they are doing, do your formatting. Make certain you check everything out before you publish your tale.

When it comes to Marketing, get outside the box. Push the envelope. Don't be afraid to do things never done before. I have super plans for one book I am publishing with another author. What I plan on doing has never been done before. Obviously, I don't want to mention it yet until the book comes out. At that time we will both be glad to explain our wonkiness. Going on Facebook and saying, "Buy my book," is not Marketing. What it can be is annoying. Many people will consider it to be spam and be turned off. Turn them on, not off.

I'll give you an example of an interesting ploy if you publish print as well as eBooks. Arrange to do book signings in bars. Tell the owner that for every book a patron buys, you will buy that reader a beer. And, include a tip. Why? That bartender will steer buyers to you. Set the price of your book so you make a profit. Let's say your book is from a small Press and you get a discount and pay $7.00 for a $15.00 book. If you sell the book at $15.00, you will make a profit of $4.00 if you pay $3.00 for a beer and $1.00 tip. More than you get from Amazon or B&N. The same thing can be done in coffee shops. In no time at all, you will have a following.

I will have another post explaining eBook marketing. Notice I didn't mention which way you should go with your books. Big Six, Small Press, Cooperative, or Indie, it doesn't matter. That's up to you and what you want to do. I will be posting more of my little tips in the future. Publishing has changed, folks. Be willing to change with it.

Happy writing to everyone!

Blaze McRob