|JCP News • Issue 35 • November 2010
Beautiful, Mysterious and Bizarre: M/M Horror & Urban Fantasy by Jordan Castillo Price
I'm good. The kitties are good. I've been picking apart PsyCop 6 in Scrivener and feeling really good about it. Instead of having this huge, forbidding blob of "text", I can now see it as discrete scenes, and analyze the themes and arcs.
I don't have a release date in mind quite yet, but I'll let you know when I do. Hell, I'll shout it from the rooftops. (And my neighbors will go, "Huh?")
I think I'm secure enough in the story to announce the title and cover--see the "PsyCop News" section.
Like Begets Like
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Scrivener - This was originally a Mac-only software, but there's now a Windows beta. He'll also let you try it free for a month, how cool!
Windows Beta version 3 (I haven't tried this yet but I think I need to go install it on my laptop when I'm done writing this newsletter.)
I could sign up for an affiliate program and try to skim a few bucks, but nah. I think the Scrivener team deserves whatever they make, plus they've kept their product price low and they're generous with their trials. Way to go, Scrivenees.
Tapped - Here's the disturbing film on bottled water that caused me to do a lot of soul-searching. Also available streaming through Netflix.
SubZero Fliptop Stainless Steel Water Bottle - I can't find a picture of this anywhere online! It was five bucks at Walgreens and came with two caps, a fliptop and a carabiner. I like it better than the bottle I paid three times as much for on Amazon, because it's got a gently fluted shape that feels better to hold, and it's not as massive. Just goes to show you that expensive is not always better.
These lucky folks won an ebook this month for opening their newsletters or participating in blog giveaways
Jordan on the Web
Looking for more JCP News? Find the last five installments here:
Do you NaNo?
It's November, also known as NaNoWriMo or National Novel Writing Month. I haven't NaNo'ed in a while, but for a few years I headed up our local chapter, and I'm always excited about the surge of interest in writing NaNo creates.
The writing software Scrivener released a major upgrade just in time for NaNo. How is it different from most other word processing programs? Scrivener has a system of binders rather than a single file. So your story is a "binder" and within that binder you could break it into chapters or even into scenes, and then you can shuffle those chapters or scenes around. There are also synopses of each piece that you can view on their own as a bunch of 3x5 cards or as an outline, so that you can quickly read through a synopsis of your novel and see where changes need to happen, or what themes are emerging. Here's a great article on Scrivener version 1 that explains what the program does in greater detail.
For a novelette or shorter, I don't need this level of nitpickery. I can track structure, arcs and themes in my head. But anything over 35,000 words—heck, yeah! See my sidebar for more info about Scrivener.
What absolutely fascinates me is that Scrivener, a software with huge buzz among its niche group of users, a software that takes traditional word processing, specializes it, and makes it so much better than what's already out there to date, was created by one guy.
One part-time, self-taught guy: Keith Blount.
Isn't it a fascinating world we live in, where one self-taught programmer can create a program that competes with the scads and teams of programmers at Microsoft, Adobe and Apple? That he has a vehicle, the Internet, by which to sell this program? It gives me a little thrill to think that indie ebook publishers like me aren't the only ones out there saying, "I think it should be done differently, and darn it, I'm willing to teach myself how to produce it, if that's what it takes."
Remember, you support content creation that entertains or benefits you by supporting indies. Leaving product reviews or blogging (or gushing in your newsletter, as I'm doing here) means a heck of a lot more to the JCPs and Keith Blounts of the world than it does to the Microsofts. Leave reviews or posts or tweets whenever you can. Two minutes of your time makes a difference!
And the title is...
To gear up for PsyCop 6, I've re-tooled the PsyCop website and posted the cover art for GhosTV.
I was researching evil corporations and the food supply to get a handle on the backstory of The Starving Years. While I know you're here for entertainment and not to be preached at, I thought the things that surprised me might interest you as well.
The movie Tapped explores the practice of water-mining and the effect of the production of plastic water bottles. I'd thought I might glean an interesting attitude or anecdote from the film. You know, "Oh those wacky mega-coporations and special interest groups! *Wink*" But instead I was so appalled I couldn't get to sleep.
I went to an apple tasting at the Wisconsin Historical Society Museum last night! Heirloom fruits and veggies are interesting to me, because I'm always fascinated by the things that get bred in and out of our food supply over the years. Things like apples and pears are different; they're so long-lived, so you could theoretically eat an apple from a tree a century old, if you had access to the tree. (The pear tree in my mother's yard finally died this year. We estimated it was 200 years old. That's about the maximum life span for an apple tree so if pears are similar, I suppose it was the tree's time.)
Since The Starving Years is all about the food supply, and my protagonist is a food science PhD, I was particularly riveted when the orchard owners waxed scientific. Splicing...it's not just for human/octopus hybrids anymore!
The Starving Years, Chapter 10
Javier handed the manna to Randy through the window, then hauled himself back out onto the fire escape. The sun had set, and the temperature was dropping fast. A small tendril of steam rose from Marianne's forgotten coffee. "How do you know they really have a baby?" Randy asked—not as if he was particularly concerned. More like he was accustomed to playing devil's advocate.
"What do you want them to do?" Marianne whispered, though Javier suspected it was unlikely the neighbors would understand her anyway, especially across the span of the building over the background noise of the rising wind. "Bring the kid outside and show it to you?"
Voting for next month's installment will be open until 11/25...remember that as you're consuming your turkey bodies.
Petit Morts Ebooks:
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Email me at jordan (at) psycop (dot) com
JCP News • Jordan Castillo Price • PO Box 153 • Barneveld, WI 53507