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Posts by jlwallen
Today I had a great lunch meeting with a fellow writer buddy of mine. While he and I spouted off our various projects it came to light how many side projects I had that related to my written works. A number of those side projects are videos. That’s right, I’m breaking into video production. This will start in the form of promo videos for various books, but will eventually lead to a short tie-in film for my novel Hell’s Muse and then a full-length feature.
The gist of that meeting? “You never know!”
The other day I received a box in the mail. Neatly and lovingly packed inside the box was a very special gift…a gift that made me realize that my work touches people on many levels.
I don’t usually take up this space to rant about things; but I’ve finally reached critical mass. With who you say? Cable television. Google this “hd channels pixelated” and you’ll get about a half a million hits of users complaining that some (or many) of their cable high def channels are simply not watchable. The issue is called either pixellation or blocking and it’s bad. At my home we’ve had seven technicians come out to examine the issue — each one saying “Looks like you have a weak signal which is causing the problems”. Really, weak signal? We live in one of the largest metropolitan cities in the US, near the heart of the city — and our signal is weak?
It’s almost upon us! By the time this week is written up in the annals of history, the prequel to the I Zombie series, T-Minus Zero, will be available. To get you even further pumped, here is chapter one of that novel!
The apocalypse has struck and you’re there, waiting for more information on how to survive the onslaught of the undead. Your best bet is the writings of Jacob Plummer and Bethany Nitshimi. But it’s been a while since Bethany last put her fingers to typewriter to offer up words of wisdom. So what gives? Why is it taking me so long? Exactly why am I so horrible and lame to treat my fans this way?
Because I’m evil! MUHAHAHA!
I kid, I kid — with love.
The truth is, there’s much in the way of news, so let’s get down to bidness!
It’s that time again kitties and catses — time for another jack’ing of another innocent victim. This time around it’s fellow steampunk writer (I can say that now because, well, I can.. so there, shut it!). So let’s all grab a nice bowl of schmilk and a can of tuna and curl up in the smallest of boxes as we Jack the crap out of Kat French.
Ladies and gents of the Jackverse, I cannot tell you how thrilled I am about one of my upcoming releases — my first steampunk novel. So excited am I, that I am going to share with you a portion of the first chapter of this book. And so, without further adieu, I give you chapter 1:00 O’CLOCK from the first draft of Klockwerk Cabaret.
We live in a time of disturbing trends. From the “Me Generation” to war torn nations, to terrorism, to abject apathy — everything seems destined to force humanity on a collision course with madness. Somehow the immediacy of nearly everything has soiled our souls and stripped us of the one thing that truly defines our species — compassion.
Let’s face it, the world isn’t being taken care of. The leaders of the free (and not so free) world have pretty much chewed up the planet (and it’s population) and pooped it out into a steaming pile of “I don’t care”. Logic has pretty much left the building with Elvis and compassion was voted off the island along with intelligence.
This wouldn’t all be happening if I ran the world. How can I say that? The world is a tough place to run. It’s angry, confusing, and just generally in a constant state of PMS. But the leaders have pretty much run it so far into the ground that anyone with half a brain (and conscience) could do a better job. With that in mind, I thought I’d list out what I would do if the world was run by Jack.
As everyone in the Jackverse knows, I am about to complete the first book in my Klockwerk Kabaret steampunk series. During the process of penning this tale, I fell in love with the genre. Not only does it offer the joy of creating something wholly unique, it allows the writer to dive into worlds unseen; with a fabric so flexible, the dirigible-filled sky is the limit.
Before this book is released, I wanted to touch on the variations on the steampunk theme — so you can have a full understanding of just what steampunk is before you lay down your iron coins to purchase my book.
The countdown is nearing zero. Before that clock ticks down, I wanted to share with the Dark Hayride a taste of what is to come. Here is Chapter 3 of the prequel to the I Zombie series, T-Minus Zero.
I want to preface this by saying, I write this today with a rather cheeky tongue. With that in mind…
We all know the saying “Ignorance is bliss”. Over the last few days, I have come to realize that saying is far more true and deeply profound as I original gave it credit.
Everyone, say it with me — “Ignorance is bliss.” Now, say it again — “Ignorance IS bliss”.
If you’re not in the loop, the next book to come out of the mind of Jack Wallen (after T-Minus Zero) will be Klockwerk Kabaret. This story is a dark steampunk tale about Nathan Gage and Olivia Nightingale, the proprietors of the Klockwerk Kabaret. As the name implies, the establishment (resting in the heart of Mainspring) is a cabaret that features the song stylings of Olivia as well as the mechanical, sensual wonders — the Klockwerk Dolls. But there’s so much more to the story than that!
Recently I read a letter of resignation from a long-time teacher who finally had enough of the system telling him he basically had to treat his students as if they were nothing more than an assembly line of open brains to be fed the same information in the same way. The idea that not only students should be treated as unique beings, each with unique needs, but that every teacher can better serve the educational system by teaching in their own, unique, style — was no longer accepted. The job of the teacher was to force Tab A into Slot B at all cost.
It should be clearly obvious that such a means of education would not only fail, but does a complete injustice to one of the most important pieces of the human puzzle — education. But what this also points out is something a bit darker and the conspiracy streak in me has glommed onto something I think most certainly worth sharing.
Conformity is the enemy of the soul.
I was chatting with a buddy of mine this week on the subject of forgiveness and how it relates to the world in which we live. The topic came about when I was telling him about a mistake I made in an article and how there was such a lack of forgiving and understanding surrounding said mistake. From that, it hit me just how our culture has degraded with regards to courtesy and kindness.
As you know, I’m a huge Rush fan. I have been since eighth grade (that’d be around 1982 — in case curiosity got your inner cat). I thought it’d be a cool little exercise to list out one favorite song from each of their studio albums. You can then put that playlist together and get your Rush on in Zombie King style! So, without further adieu, let’s have at it.
I never thought these words would come out of my mouth, but here goes… Hollywood (and the silver screen) is getting pummelled into oblivion by television. That’s right, I said it — TV is besting Hollywood. And although the spectre of reality TV still poisons the pudding, television is riding a wave of intelligent, provocative programming while Hollywood is fading fast.
I can tell you, in a single word, why this is happening — books. That’s right, ladies and gentlemen of the Dark Hayride, the reason television is besting Hollywood is because of its source material.
I was chatting with my step daughter when she asked me a simple question: “Why do Americans all look so different, when other races tend to look similar?” The answer was simple — we are mutts. Americans have bred with so many different races that we have become a veritable smorgasbord of flavor. This country was once called The Great American Melting Pot. Why? Because we welcomed everyone a home away from tyranny and oppression. We gave everyone the right to be treated as an equal and fellow human being.
So why does that end with, of all things, marriage? What is it about marriage that makes it so untouchable? After decades of American citizens abusing the institution, with the divorce rate above fifty percent — why are we still having to fight for the right for same sex couples to enjoy the legal and loving bonds of matrimony?