Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Face Off Short Story!

I love the SciFi Channel's special effects makeup reality series Faceoff which starts a new season tonight! It's my favorite show. So creative! So positive...most of the time. Some particularly un-positive judging inspired the following short story. Enjoy!

By: Adam Gaylord
“I think you made some really bad decisions with this makeup,” the judge of the popular special-effects makeup reality show said. “Your alien’s head is bulbous and lopsided, the color palate of the skin is dull and boring, and the scales don’t make any sense.”
     Gartron burst out laughing. He pointed at the view-screen. “Ohh! It looks just like you! Lopsided and dull!” he howled.
     “I am going to reduce that planet to ash,” Mal-tor seethed.
     “But with as bad as your makeup was,” the judge continued, “your competitor’s was worse. The bright red floppy ears, the monochrome yellow hair, the bad teeth. Your alien looks like a poorly drawn cartoon character.”
     Gartron’s laughter stopped. He stood, brushing a lock of yellow hair back behind a large floppy ear.
“I’ll warm up the plasma cannon.”


Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Three Really Great Short Stories

I've mentioned it before but I really love Daily Science Fiction. It's so great to have a (usually) high quality speculative fiction short story delivered every day. A daily dose of quality fiction sparks my creativity and further enhances my already wonderful morning constitutional. ALTHOUGH...they are also bastards because they straight out refuse to publish anything I write. I'm not bitter, I swear.

With that in mind, please check out three of the best short stories from the last month or so of DSF.com. These three pretty much blew my mind. Super creative. I hope you like them as much as I do! 

Totality by Tony Pisculli - A romantic love affair only possible during full solar eclipses. Very cool.

Goldfish by Elizabeth Archer - Genetic engineering with a crazy twist! I usually see these things coming but the ending smacked me silly.

We Are All But Embers by Gemma Noon - Wow. Just...wow.

How about you? Have you read any whoppers lately?

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Unlimited books for $10 a month?

I just stumbled upon OysterBooks.com where apparently you can access as many books as you can read for $10 a month. If you're a heavy ebook reader, this seems like it could be pretty sweet. Has anyone tried it? What do folks think?

Monday, December 23, 2013

Sponsor Your Own Writing Challenge through Dark Futures Magazine!

So I think this is pretty cool. Dark Futures is running a pre-order/funding campaign for their First Annual Anthology (which I happen to have a story in) and for $25 you can sponsor a writing contest run through the magazine based on a theme of your choice!

Want more cycloptic time-traveling strippers in your fiction? Done! Fewer cycloptic time-traveling strippers...what the heck is your problem?!?! The point is, you could have some serious fun!

Check out their cool cover art!

As an added bonus you get a pdf copy of the First Annual Anthology (and my story) or a paperback version for $30.

I for one am going to give myself an early Christmas Present and jump on this (so you should probably get you cycloptic time-traveling stripper short-stories polished up).


Saturday, December 14, 2013

New Hopstory: Breakside Brewing in Portland, OR

Check out our latest Hopstory featuring Breakside Brewing in Portland, OR. One of the best IPAs and pilsners on the market and a solid lineup of rotating experimental brews plus an exciting new barrel aging program!

Hopstories #7: Breakside Brewery from Eric Buist on Vimeo.

Also, check out my writeup at www.Hopstories.com.

Friday, November 8, 2013

Getting Published Right and Left

I've been having some good fortune with publishing lately. 

On the fiction front I've had my short story "Lightning Flashed" accepted for a November 10 release at Dark Futures Magazine (3rd paid pub for this story) and I have a couple other stories short-listed various places, including my first ever literary fiction piece. 

Nonfiction has been even more exciting. I had my graduate thesis published in June and I just got word that my first manuscript has been accepted by "The Journal of Fish and WildlifeManagement" and could be published as early as March. That's huge for me. Getting published is hard but especially so in academia. 

Also nonfiction, my beer centered documentary project "Hopstories" has been cruising along. We've released 6 episodes, a 7th is due out next week, and we just released our 1st collaboration story. We're also planning to roll out our new website soon and we're always looking for our next brewery to work with.

So I've had a little luck lately. But more than that, I've learned that the most important thing if I want to get published is persistence. I have to be bull headed. I have to stubborn. I have to hone my craft and continue to improve, of course. But most important is persistence. 

Hopstories Collaboration #1: Norman and Calapooia Brewing from Eric Buist on Vimeo.

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Speak English!

Last weekend I went to a writing group for the first time ever. I'm not sure how I felt about it so I won't say much about the experience, yet.

One thing I did find interesting was the animosity these folks had for certain plot devices, namely "speak English".

You know what I'm talking about. That's when the brainiest character in a story lays down some crazy-complicated technical jargon. Then the action-minded main character says, "Speak English." and the brainy character is forced to explain a concept or term. Of course, this is all for the benefit of the reader, who the author assumes doesn't or won't understand. It's used all the time, especially in Sci-Fi (which is usually particularly concept/jargon heavy).

Maybe that's the problem. It's potentially insulting to your reader to assume they won't know what your talking about. And this particular group of readers (the writing group folks) were really smart. I was easily the dumbest person in the room. So maybe they feel it's insulting. I didn't have the balls to ask.

Frankly, I don't have a problem with "Speak English". It's effective. It gets the job done. Just like all things, it should be used in moderation. But the fact is there are sometimes things that need to be explained. I would rather assume that my readers don't understand a concept and explain it than lose my readers completely.

What about you? Is it overused? Is it insulting? Let me know what you think. And please, speak English.