Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Latest Writing Wednesday

My latest writing post is up.

By Darrell B. Nelson author of I KILLED THE MAN THAT WASN'T THERE

Monday, November 28, 2011

CGI Vegetable

In my last poll by a two to one margin, people thought that Micheal Bay committed worse Crimes against Humanity than Hitler. Torquemada got off Scott free. I have a feeling that this is due to the recentness of the Abomination that is Transformers III and that Torquemada's crimes were so far in the past that people don't have any emotions about them.

But that doesn't excuse the brain director that only knows how to stuff CGI into movies for all the misery he has caused.

Speaking of Vegetables congress has ruled that Pizza is a vegetable, because the sauce is made from tomatoes which are fruits. The logic behind that escapes me. So I was wondering what should they declare a vegetable next?

Coal: Coal is made from plant matter, probably a few real vegetables in there, that has been compressed for millions of years until everything but the carbon has been squeezed out of it. (Ultra simplified explanation) since it is made from plant matter it is as much a vegetable as pizza.

Meat: Most meat that humans eat come from herbivores, animals that eat plants. In the case of modern farm raised chickens their diet is mostly corn. Since they are made from plants they are as much a vegetable as pizza.

Bourbon: Bourbon is made from corn mash. Corn is a vegetable, Bourbon is more of a vegetable than pizza.

Bullshit: Bulls eat corn and turn it in to crap. It is more of a vegetable than pizza and congress should be familiar with bullshit as they produce enough of it.

As always vote at the upper left hand corner of the page.

By Darrell B. Nelson author of I KILLED THE MAN THAT WASN'T THERE

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Shut-up Stupid Sunday: Change

Back in what some readers consider the dawn of time, 1997, I worked on project designed to change the world.

At that time this new thing called a CD burner was causing a huge problem for the music industry. With a CD burner on their computer a person could make unlimited copies of their favorite music and share it with friends. To make matters worse, if 12 CDs came out with only one good song on each a person with good computer skills could take out those 12 songs and make one CD that was as enjoyable as if they had all $300 worth of CDs.

The project I worked on was based on two simple principals. One, people will pay for things they believe has value to them. Two, people like convenience.

Our project let people go on the Internet, look through a list of songs and buy the ones they liked. In those days we were working with 33 baud modems so downloading them would take all day. So we would burn them to a CD and mail them to the people.

The idea was that people who didn't like spending $300 for 12 songs would pay $30 for 12 songs. The music industry would make money as the volume of purchases increased even if they weren't getting money for songs no one wanted.

A major label saw our idea and bought the rights at a low price and gave us huge royalties for each CD sold as long as they had control over content.

They then forbid any content on the site, effectively killing the idea. Five years later Steve Jobs took the same concept and made iTunes, and everyone who buys music buys it off iTunes.

To make it clear, iTunes has a much better interface and is easier to use than our early model did, but what made it a success was that he convinced the major labels to give up their old business model.

Now, 14 years later, I'm looking at the publishing industry and hearing the same complaints that the music industry had back then.

Just like the music industry back then people are working around the old model and people in power fear this.

Here are the facts about books.

People are reading more than ever, that's amazing! With more things to distract them people are turning back to books.

The Young Adult Market exploded over the last few years. The primary readers of Young Adult fiction is (betcha don't see this coming) Young Adults.

Young Adults grow up, they are weird that way. So not only are there still lots of Young Adult readers, there are lots of former young adults that still like to read.

In other words demand for books has never been higher.

Here is a little opinion, take it for that.

Stephenie Meyer's Twilight series was badly written (again that is just opinion). I believe they sold so well because they were badly written. Way too many books have been over polished and reworked so the raw spark that made them interesting looks too commercial and mass produced. One thing about the Twilight books is they don't look over polished. There is still a raw quirkiness to them that would be lost if the “bad” writing were taken away.

So while the demand for books is higher than ever and readers want (opinion) raw quirkiness. The publishing industry buying fewer books that they want polished to a higher standard than ever before. Then they complain that Amazon and Smashwords are killing them through sear volume.

So to all the people in traditional industries who see demand up but profits down, I say, “Change is not the enemy, new ways of reaching the market is not something to be feared. This is the new face of competition. Either embrace change and work to take advantage of it or find yourself irrelevant in the new marketplace.”

By Darrell B. Nelson author of I KILLED THE MAN THAT WASN'T THERE

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving

I'm thankful to all the crazy ones out there. All the people that feel good enough is not enough. The people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world. If it weren't for the crazy ones we'd still be living in caves.

That and evil minions!
By Darrell B. Nelson author of I KILLED THE MAN THAT WASN'T THERE

Monday, November 21, 2011

Crimes against Humanity Poll

In my last poll AN EXTRA TOPPING OF HORROR won as the my best book cover.
I personally like the bottom skull on the left. He looks a little “special”.

On to my next poll:

If you had a time machine and could take one bullet back in time with you so you could stop one person from committing their crimes against humanity who would you kill?

Hitler if it would prevent the holocaust, and WWII saving over 60 million people.

Torquemada of Spain if it would prevent the Spanish Inquisition stopping the torture of 150,000 people.

Micheal Bay if it would prevent, Armageddon, Pearl Harbor, The Island, Transformers as well stopped him from desecrating the memory of The Texas Chain Saw Massacre, The Hitcher, Friday the 13th, and A Nightmare on Elm St. Saving millions from having to watch those horrible films.

As always vote on the upper left hand corner of the page.

By Darrell B. Nelson author of I KILLED THE MAN THAT WASN'T THERE

Sunday, November 20, 2011

(Don't) Shut-up Stupid Sunday: Violence doesn't prove anything

Two men got in an argument over the idea that violence doesn't prove anything. One man got so mad that he slugged the other across the chin knocking him down. He screamed, “Now do you see my point?”

The other man looked up and said, “Hell no.”

The first man smiled and said, “Exactly!”

In cities across the nation, police supervisors (not the actual beat cops who have to deal with citizens on a daily basis) are beating up the OWS protesters. In Berkley a police supervisor walked back and forth pepper-spraying sitting protesters until they were taken to the hospital.

In Oakland, a 94 year old was pepper sprayed and a Iraq war vet was given a concussion and is now unable to speak.

In New York City a man was beaten and when a former supreme court judge who was acting as a legal observer told the cop to cuff him or let him go she was pinned against the wall and threatened.

In Chapel Hill the SWAT team raided the support camp for the occupy movement, threatening them with assault rifles.

In Tampa the police rolled out a Tank, actually a 12 ton armored personal carrier, to remove protesters. The Chinese government tried this tactic in the 90s on protesters in Tiananmen Square.

The response from government officials has been to say that, “the unwashed peasants and drugged up hippies are starting class warfare by calling the 1% names.” and that the Union members should, “Get a job.”

For some reason this message isn't catching on.

This violent response to the OWS movement has to stop. During the Tiananmen Square protests the US condemned the Chinese Government for sending Tanks to stop a peaceful movement. When the Egyptian Government used force against the protesters in Tahrir Square the US condemned the violence even while not taking a side.

By remaining silent as the police are sending the protesters to the hospital our leaders, even the ones who claim to be progressive, are showing exactly whose side they are on.

So to the politicians who claim that they are in favor of free speech but say nothing about the spreading violent response to the protesters, I say, “By staying silent you are complicit in the violence. If this sort of government sponsored violence were happening anywhere else in the world, you would be quick to condemn it. But here in America when city governments violently abuse their citizens the silence is deafening. I call on anyone who calls themselves a Government Official and a Human Being to stand up and say: The violence against the protesters must stop!”

By Darrell B. Nelson author of I KILLED THE MAN THAT WASN'T THERE

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

An Extra Topping of Horror

Today is the day: I officially release my Comedic Urban Fantasy Novel AN EXTRA TOPPING OF HORROR.

Here's the blurb:

Brian is perfectly happy delivering pizza to incompetent devil worshipers, lustful demons, show tune singing vampires, possessed little girls who love riddles, and over-affectionate houseplants. His life gets even better when a time traveling babe he rescues tells him they will be lovers in the future.

But his carefree life is destroyed when aliens bent on taking over the Earth open a rival pizza place in town and he discovers exactly what their secret ingredient is. Now he must use all the secrets he knows about his hometown and its inhabitants to stop aliens from taking over the Earth and more importantly, keep his job.

It is available at Smashwords and Amazon for $0.99

With AN EXTRA TOPPING OF HORROR, I have a simple goal. I want to entertain the reader for a several hours or days (depending on reading speed) and give them a something worth the buck that could have rented a movie that would keep them entertained for two hours.
At both Smashwords and Amazon you can download the first 20% of the novel and sample it before you buy it.
The best sales pitch for a book is the book itself so enjoy the first chapter:

An Extra Topping of Horror

Chapter 1
The Root of Affection

Brian was a little taken aback by the note that the customer handed him. The customer was female but he couldn’t make out much else as she was wearing a wide brimmed leather hat pulled down to almost touch her dark sunglasses. She was a full half a foot shorter than Brian's even six feet, so the hat hid her face from his view. She had the collar of her heavy leather jacket pulled up hiding her jaw. Brian thought that odd, as it was a warm summer night. But she had given him a dollar tip just for handing the pizza to her so he opened her note gladly.

Having women give him their phone number after getting their pizza wasn’t unheard of but when they did they didn’t try to hide themselves from him, quite the opposite in fact. He always ignored notes that women gave him, but he was still flattered by them. The mysterious woman who handed him the note was somehow different even though he couldn’t see what she looked like he thought it might be worth following up.

He opened the note expecting a name and a phone number but instead there were two sentences written in male handwriting. “Believe in yourself. Don’t trust Dr. Hyams.

That left him confused; he didn’t know a Dr. Hyams. He looked closer at the note and recognized the handwriting; it was his. He wondered why someone would go through the trouble to make this elaborate prank, carefully learning to forge his handwriting in order to pass him a note that made no sense.

Since the woman who passed him the note had already left, Brian looked over at the man who had become his best friend over the last three years. He didn’t like the look on Bernie’s face when he hung up the phone. Brian knew from the night manager’s expression that he was about to give him bad news. He had been hoping to start cleaning up the carryout/delivery restaurant for the night as it had slowed down enough for Bernie to let the two insiders and one of the delivery drivers go home for the night. He knew from the look on Bernie’s face that his plans for getting out early weren’t going to happen. All thoughts about the strange note were pushed out of Brian’s head.

“I’ve got a delivery for you.” Bernie forced a smile as he hit the finish button on the computer making the labels for the pizzas print out.

“Strange customer or out of our delivery area?” Brian asked throwing away the note and automatically doing the insider job of placing the labels on the pizza boxes. He knew from the expression of the younger man that it was one of the two.

“Both.” Bernie walked over to slap out the dough for the pizzas, “It’s out to the Brandon Estate. The place is owned by Edwin Brandon, the brother of the former mayor, he still has a lot of power on the City Council so when he orders we kind of have to go. You know how it is with small town politics.”

“Brandon?” Brian asked hesitantly after hearing the last name.

“Not the Police Chief, Reggie Brandon, his uncle Edwin, the old mayor’s brother,” Bernie said. “Is that a problem?”

“No, it was a long time ago,” Brian said. “I doubt he’ll remember me.”

“That’s good, Brandon lives several miles outside of town and orders pizzas from time to time, I’m surprised you haven’t had to go out there yet.” Bernie continued as he put the sauce on the pizzas, “The other drivers say he’s a bit strange…”

“Us, get a strange customer?” Brian laughed, “That’s unheard of.”

“Well, he might not be the strangest customer, but he’s right up there.” Bernie laughed with Brian before continuing, “Anyway, if his instructions aren’t carried out to the letter he doesn’t tip. He’s real anal about that.”

“That’s an image I didn’t need in my head,” Brian said.

“I didn’t mean it that way,” Bernie said. “No tip would be worth that.”

“Tell me about it.”

“Seriously though, this time he wants you to go all the way back to the greenhouse rather than the main house. Who the hell knows how far back that is? So when you add the two together it’s a bit of a time waster, but if we don’t deliver he tells Chief Brandon and then Brandon starts pulling over our drivers out of spite.”

“You’d think the City Police would be like the Sheriff and Troopers and like the Delivery Drivers.” Brian commented, “Just think of all the drunks with munchies we keep off the streets.”

“Chief Brandon doesn’t look at it like that. To him we’re just one more group he can kick around. That guy must have been seriously tormented in school or something to get his kicks off abusing his power against delivery drivers.”

“Yeah, he was for a year.” Brian got in position to place the pepperonis on the pizza.

“You went to school with him?” Bernie threw the cheese on the pizza slid it over to Brian.

“Yep.” Brian put the pepperonis on the customer’s pizza.

“But you’re not going to talk about it, right?” Bernie asked knowingly as he started slapping out the crust for the next Pizza.

“Well, I could, but it makes me look like a total dick.” Brian finished up the pizza and put it in the oven before Bernie could ask more questions.

“You couldn’t have been that evil before you started here.” Bernie started putting the toppings on the second pizza. “With all the stuff you won’t talk about someone would think you were an evil mastermind before giving up your criminal empire to deliver pizzas.”

“It wasn’t that exciting, more like a vengeful administrator than a fully accredited evil mastermind, most of the time anyway.” Brian joked in order to avoid his best friend’s probing, “but it’s better to stand in silence and let people think you’re a fool than open your mouth and prove it.”

“Okay, suit yourself.” Bernie smiled then got back to business, “You should be back right a little after closing time. I’ll have Kyle stay late and clean up for you. Hopefully he won’t be too mad, he told me he has a quest party for one of his video games at midnight, but I’ll help him and hopefully get him out of here in time for it. Unless you think going on this run is a problem in which case I can have Kyle take it, but then he will definitely miss his quest party.”

“That's okay.” Brian took a deep breath. “I doubt he'll recognize me in my uniform and I know how Kyle is about his video games.”

“It's bad enough I'm going to have to listen to him complain about not having time to get ready for his quest party,” Bernie said. “If he missed it he'd be moping for the next week.”

“Thanks, tell him I’ll make it up to him.” Brian said even though it was unnecessary as the delivery drivers always backed each other up.


The customer lived pretty far out of town and even taking some of the shortcuts that he had learned over the past three years of delivering pizzas it still took Brian 20 minutes to get out to the large mansion.

“An exquisite pre-war mansion with definite curb appeal.” Brian couldn’t help evaluating in his old real estate vulture mode when he pulled up the circular driveway and stopped in front of the wrap around porch, which had an elegant second story balcony.

In the dark it was hard to evaluate the property, but Brian’s trained eye could make out how the windows had low profile storm windows over the old leaded glass windows and he had spotted the large cable and telephone lines on the pole outside the mansion. It had decent Internet inside that would make quite literally a million dollar difference on the value of a mansion like this.

If the inside were as well maintained as the outside the place could easily flip for over $10 million. If Brian were still in the game he’d run a soft hit on the owners credit to see if it was possible to force him to sell. He had worked deals that size in the past, but not often.

Brian put aside all his old real estate thoughts and looked around for the greenhouse. He spotted a lit path going to the back of the house and saw the greenhouse a few hundred feet behind the main house. The outside was well lit, but oddly all the inside lights were out. It didn’t feel quite right but Brian thought about all the trouble this family could cause for the Pizza Joint and headed down the path anyway. When he got to the greenhouse he knocked on the glass door and tried to look in but could only see vague shapes.

“Come right in, boy.” Brian heard a voice come from inside the glass structure.

Normally Brian would just yell, “Pizza” and wait for the customer to come out, but tonight his mind was on how Bernie told him the customer was very strict about drivers following instructions, so he went into the dark building. He walked about five paces when the lights came on blinding him.

“Dinner, Audrey!” He heard the man yell.

Brian looked to his right to see an enormous orchid with a stem over 6 feet tall, the flower bulb on top was larger than Brian’s head.

Brian was too shocked to move as the orchid wrapped a root around his shoulders and the enormous flower bulb shot towards his head. It moved towards him too quickly for him to react and all he could think was that becoming plant food was a fitting end to his strange life.

To find out what happens to Brian, go to Smashwords or Amazon and download the free sample.

By Darrell B. Nelson author of I KILLED THE MAN THAT WASN'T THERE

Monday, November 14, 2011

Self-Serving Poll

I've neglected my blog for the last week, opps. So I'll look at the poll from two weeks ago today.

I asked what Halloween costume was the scariest to the 1%. The answer overwhelmingly was reality. For people that believe that money can beat reality a true look at the real world is terrifying.

Today's poll, a sneak peek at what I am preparing for this week. Can you figure it out?

Which of my book covers do you like the best?





As always vote on the upper left hand corner of the page.

Any personal feedback on why you like a cover would be totally appreciated.

By Darrell B. Nelson author of I KILLED THE MAN THAT WASN'T THERE

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Shut-up Stupid Sunday: My Body

This past week has been horrible for me. Not in any specific way, that would almost be better. I'm trying to adjust to the time change. I picked up some sort of stomach bug, not enough to be ill but really annoying making my stomach complain while I exercise and making me need an extra hour of sleep at night. On top of all that after a beautiful October and first week of November the weather turned nasty.

It all adds up and makes me feel totally unmotivated to do anything.

So to my body I say, “Shut-up Stupid, I understand you need to adjust to all these things, but leaving me miserable for an entire week is ridiculous. Get over it and let me get back to work.”

By Darrell B. Nelson author of I KILLED THE MAN THAT WASN'T THERE

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Shut-up Stupid Sunday: Is greed good?

The core belief of Conservatives can be summed up by Gordon Gekko's speech in Wall St.:

The point is, ladies and gentleman, that greed, for lack of a better word, is good. Greed is right, greed works. Greed clarifies, cuts through, and captures the essence of the evolutionary spirit. Greed, in all of its forms; greed for life, for money, for love, knowledge has marked the upward surge of mankind. And greed, you mark my words, will not only save Teldar Paper, but that other malfunctioning corporation called the USA.

It's a mantra that is repeated over and over as a solution to every problem, that the greed of the “Widows and Idiot sons” of people who made money will fix what ever, because they want more. The greed for more money will solve other problems somehow.

Gekko's speech was focused at the shareholders of Teldar Paper, in the narrowest interpretation of that speech it would imply that “Greed” would make more money for the shareholders. So let's look at the real world and see if “Greed” makes shareholders money.

Of the top three companies as far as Market Capitalization, two are oil companies. Exxon Mobile and PetroChina. From experience as the Vice-President of an oil company I know the oil game is all based on luck. In the case of those two they are subsidized by the two largest governments in the world so the rules are in their favor. But it is still based on luck.

The third company in the top of Market Capitalization is Apple. How did Steve Jobs explain Apple's success:

"[We want to] get new products out there and have new ways to buy them. I think if we manage the top line, the bottom line will follow. I don't know what the future will bring, but we're working as fast as we can,"

That is the opposite of running a company by greed. Instead of focusing on making more money Apple focuses on making better products. Smaller, faster and easier to use. By putting their energy into making a better world they have in turn beaten the companies that are ruled by “Greed” at their own game.

If greed and the lust for money, can't beat the vision of making a better world in making money, how can it beat it in making a better world.

The idea that the lust for money money will lead to a better world is backwards. The desire for a better world and the commitment to see it through will lead to making more money.

So to all the people who say greed is good, I say, “Shut-up Stupid, the world isn't a zero-sum game. Making money isn't always about beating someone else. If you look at your top line, how your business helps people, what you want your business to do in the world, and you focus on achieving that, money will follow. Wanting more money isn't going to make a better world, but wanting a better world will make more money.”

By Darrell B. Nelson author of I KILLED THE MAN THAT WASN'T THERE

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Writing Wednesday: The sixth novel

I thought I'd do something a little different and do my Writing Wednesday on a Wednesday. Here it is:

By Darrell B. Nelson author of I KILLED THE MAN THAT WASN'T THERE