Category: Author Resources

Stuff authors can use to up their game.

Astonishingly Fast Evolution

The Science Scientists predicted, observed, and proved the evolution of a Florida lizard – but they were shocked at how fast and how much they changed.  Within fifteen to twenty generations, green anole lizard feet dramatically changed in size and...

Westworld Doesn’t Get AI

Westworld season 1 left me feeling lost (geek allusion intended) most of the season, which was undoubtedly J.J. Abrams’ fault (he wrote/directed Lost) but Westworld’s season 1 finale was so good and the payoff was so unexpected, I trudged all...

Ramin Djawadi – Master Composer

  Many modern authors write while listening to music soundtracks.  I’ve been doing that for a number of years now.  “Cornered” from Salt has pushed me to write faster paced scenes and nothing has deluged me with a sense of fantasy more than...

Avoiding the Inevitable AI Apocalypse

  Whether you’re aware of it or not, artificial intelligence is all around us and what constitutes “artificial intelligence” is becoming as definitionally nebulous as … well, whatever.  Should we call your thermostat artificially intelligent because it regulates temperature in your home...

2015, Altering Human DNA, & Taurs

  Long before Shelley’s Frankenstein, we were sharing stories about changelings, transmutations, and various forms of magic that create new forms of life.  As real science has contemplated the possibilities of real life Frankenstein breakthroughs, various transhumanist experiments in 2015 more than humbly suggested...

Terminator No Longer Sci-Fi

When Terminator first came out, the ideas behind it would have been laughable but for Arnold Schwarznegger’s boss appearance.  Time travel and cyborgs were so far from realistic science ventures that we all watched the movie with our reality regulators...

Barbarism & Challenging Your Own Paradigms

In a day when safety from political incorrectness and psychological trauma are nearly universally esteemed as inalienable rights, it is occasionally difficult to imagine a world where public executions and talionic (physical) punishments are the norm.  After all, we’re half way across...

Twitter: the Best Place for Authors

I found 1,500 real followers in 30 days and many of them are helping me find hundreds more.  If I don’t change anything, I’m scheduled do it again in the next three weeks.  You can do it too.  If you’re an...

Wolverine No Longer SciFi

Science Fiction has inspired many innovations over the past few decades.  Cloaking devices, chameleon-esque camouflage, memory manipulations (including erasures and implants), suspended animation, artificial intelligence, underwater breathing without tanks, Jedi mind control (almost), total immersion gaming, mind controlled prosthetics, personal...

Mystique No Longer SciFi?

    First, MIT came out with an unbelievably effective invisibility cloak and now, engineers from the University of California at Berkeley have created a new, very thin and flexible chameleon like artificial skin.  Okay – it might not make you...

Magneto No Longer SciFi?

Dr. Denys Makarov would have Marvel fans pretty excited if they were paying attention.  He’s recently invented a new “magnetic sensor, which is thin, robust and pliable enough to be smoothly adapted to human skin, even to the most flexible...

Underwater Dragons in SFF

Lagiacrus, the flagship monster of Monster Hunter 3, deserves your attention – and not just because this picture is so boss!  For some reason we can all probably relate to, fire breathing dragons hog the press – and maybe that’s...

The Art of Deception & Selective Memories

  Any great author must intimately confront the machinations of human nature in order to make characters believable.  Sometimes, that means studying the thought patterns and habits of children, psychopaths, naive onlookers, cannibals, animals, and serial killers.  There are several ways...

D&D Alignments and Joseph Smith

Recently, I’ve reviewed the D&D alignment systems for the purpose of looking at characters from a different angle.  Simultaneously, I found myself looking at a quote I have on my bedroom wall: “I will always maintain a true principle even...

Underwater Breathing Without Tanks

Star Wars depictions of diving technology may have been prophetic … so forget Harry Potter’s invasive spell for fish gills – that’s just uber unnecessary! The University of Southern Denmark has been developing crystals that absorb oxygen and then release that...

The Most Erroneous Stories

  The most erroneous stories and those we think we know best – and therefore never scrutinize or question.  Often, great quotes grab my attention only to fall into the trash bin the more I think about them.  That is,...

Jedi Mind Control is Here

Ten years from now, teenagers may not believe Jedi mind tricks were once fiction – and it may not matter whether or not you are weak minded.  I mentioned in previous transhumanist posts how mind controlled prosthetics are becoming surprisingly sophisticated,...

Polyphonic Singing

  Singing harmony by yourself is admittedly an exotic talent but Anna Maria Hefele can make it both exotic and … beautiful.  Tuvan throat singing has been an Inuit (Mongolian) tradition for … who knows how long (not even Wikipedia knows).  Even...

Immersion & Violence in 3D Gaming

Gamers who play violent 3D living room gaming report higher levels of anger than gamers who only play 2D systems, regardless of screen size.   The study found a strong correlation between levels of anger (as guaged by participants) and gamers’ perception...

Mind Controlled Prosthetics Now Reality

Scientists have developed a prosthetic that allows amputees to regain sensations from lost limbs.  Cybernetics – communication between machines and biological tissue – received widespread attention when the Empire Strikes Back hit the silver screen.  Luke Skywalker received a prosthetic hand...

Sci-fi Fans Demand More Linguists

Increasingly savvy movie goers are demanding that Hollywood learn an important lesson: we can tell when your aliens are using bad grammar!  Really?  Scoff all you want but it’s true and sci-fi/fantasy authors ought to take note because fans are starting...

Discovering Real Dragons

  Most mythological creatures have very interesting real life counterparts, whether they be cyclops, unicorns, giants, or anything else.  I’ve seen a number of real “dragons” in my life: winged lizards from Borneo, 1,000 pound alligators, komodo dragons, uber cool and supposedly...

Guilty Verdict Using Only Brain Waves?

  Verdict: Guilty by reason of brain waves.  Sound implausible?  Not for long.  Science Daily reports that preliminary data from the Association for Psychological Science is hoping to keep us from ever lying again … well, at least they are hoping...

River of Five Colors

  Looking for inspiration for an especially exotic destination?  I’ve frequently said that sci-fi/fantasy authors need look no further than our own beautiful planet to find inspiration for unbelievable locations custom fit for any work of fiction.  Take Cano Cristales...

Jon Jandai – Life is Easy

Sometimes it is easy for sci-fi/fantasy authors to write about exotic people without really understanding different cultures of their own world.  They write about primitive people who are superstitious and usually … well, inept.  I ran across this video by...

10% Brain Myth

For a brilliant moment, the movie Lucy was gathering an enormous amount of attention. Since I’ve been researching topics surrounding transhumanism, it caught my eye as well. I saw several discussions about the 10% brain myth but I liked this...

FantasyCon 2014 a Blast

  Where else can you find a Borimir-esque cosplay changing a baby’s diaper on a changing table while talking on a cell phone?  These bizarre things only happen at the world’s best cons! As promised, I’m writing a little on...

Unorthodox Spells & Drunken Dragons

One of the things that regularly grabs my attention when reading fantasy books/magazines/articles/pitches/short stories is the utter lack of creativity that I see from magicians/wizards/mages/witches when casting spells.  Okay, I admit, when I played D&D as a kid, fireballs were...

Shark Skin Swim Suits?

Alright Sci-Fi fans – here is another reason to be excited about the future: shark skin swim suits! 3D printing has now replicated shark skins – a feat that scientists have failed to accomplish for many years now.  Thanks to...

Writing Resources – the Great Courses

In Asia, if you have a great product, you are very likely to be successful in selling your product – word of mouth and reviews is everything. In the U.S., advertising is the true king for large businesses – I...