November 27, 2015

The Bug Done Bit Me, Dagnabit!

We cue up another episode of G.B.'s Adventures, Now?, the occasional series where G.B. discusses his thoughts and his Muse's thoughts about writing with the outside world. Today's post will feature the leaking of G.B.'s brain cells all over this blog, which is to say that those looking for some light BDSM will not find it here today (at least that's what my Muse would like everyone to know).

For the 1st quarter of 2015, my writing has been somewhere in the general vicinity of "let's procrastinate" and "I'll get to it soon, but first I need to goof on my computer for an hour and a half". Which is to say, not much of consequence was produced. However, by the 2nd quarter, I finally found something to work on, which was a total rewrite of this chapbook/novella. But as the 2nd quarter drifted into the 3rd, I found that I was spending more time forcing myself to write, than actually wanting to writing.

Scary thought indeed.

But, as they say, sometimes a good thing can pop up when you least expect it. While I was taking an unneeded break from my forced writing (working on the prequel to this), I decided to re-read one of my published short stories. Imagine my surprise when I found that the link was de-linked. With a little judicious research, which manly consisted of using Google and Facebook, I was able to find out what exactly happened. A few questions to clarify a couple of points, and I was back in business with my short story, Red Stripe.

And that, my friends, is when the writing bug bit me.

While I was trying to figure what to do with the story, an idea quickly popped into my head. a Kindle only short story release. In rapid succession, I had three stories picked out, two that were previously published and one fresh one. The fresh one turned out to be only partially written (belatedly discovered that several pages were missing from the version I was working on, but fortunately found them stashed elsewhere on the computer), so thus, I actually spent time AFTER WORK writing and polishing up the 2nd draft. I also spent a small percentage of that time planning/outlining the overall interior content.

And there was one other very tangible benefit to this bug bite: I no longer found that I was forcing myself to write. Instead of fear and loathing whenever I sat down in front of my XP to write, I had acceptance. Accepting the fact that self-imposed deadlines can be a crippler and that there is no wrong way to write (i.e., one book a year as opposed to multiple books a year), allowed me to rediscover the fact that writing has always been my oasis of calm from the crap-that-rolls-downhill-and-lands-squarely-on-my-head-every-day-life.

And that, at the very least, is the one life preserver that I can always latch onto whenever I need to.

(c) 2015 BOOKS BY G.B. MILLER. All Rights Reserved.

November 24, 2015

Make The Randomness Stop!

Some time ago (like in another lifetime it seems), I wrote a blog post at my other blog about word association as it applies to music. Unfortunately, being the balding weird guy that I is, I was unable to find it (you try finding an old blog post with no clue on the tag you threw it on and tell me you don't get aggravated).

Anyhow, the gist of the post was listening to a song on the radio, and having a completely different topic drop into your brain because of it. Well, I thought I would revisit that particular thought today and turn it upside down by asking if you've ever thought of/worked on something mundane, and have that particular task suddenly cue up your internal radio? Yes? No? Maybe?

Well, for the past couple of weeks, I've been working at the drudgery that is work and because of that drudgery, I've had my internal radio kick in for the weirdest things.

For example, the other day I was talking to a supervisor about a subordinate's timesheet, and how what he wrote down I interpeted as "fun" and not "fam" (very long and very dull story). Next thing I know, both Rock & Roll High School and Rock & Roll Radio started cranking in the background, all generated from the word fun. Another example would be that I was sitting at my desk performing a very tedious task, when before I knew it, I was playing the song Popcorn on my desk.

Another example would be when I'm sitting at my desk, with all my work completed and completely bored out my skull (H.R. has come to the erroneous determination that I don't play well with others), working on crossword puzzles. In the annals of stuff that you can do w/o getting into trouble, number one with a bullet are crossword puzzles, followed by writing something on a small memo pad/notepad. Everything else (i.e., reading) is verboten.

So the other day, I was sitting at my desk doing crossword puzzles, when one of the clues triggered two songs. The clue was, "In one...". Instantly, two songs by Cage the Elephant popped up: In One Ear and Ain't No Rest For The Wicked (fantastic c.d. that you should go out and buy).

A few minutes later, while working on the same puzzle (not very challenging, trust me), another clue created another song. The clue: "werewolves, for one". The song: Werewolves of London.

At home, the most obvious weirdness is when I have Spam for dinner (yes, I like most flavors of Spam), which usually gets me talking like Graham Chapman and singing the song.

Thus ends today's post. Thought I had even more to write about the topic of choice, but ya know, sometimes all we have to play with is our B-game, which for me, is still purty darn close to the incredibly high standards that I set for myself. Tune in later this week for the further adventures of something, taking place at the corner of Qwerty and Yuiop.

(c) 2015 BOOKS BY G.B. MILLER. All Rights Reserved.

November 20, 2015

Let Go Now, You'll Spoil Your Dinner!

So, here's the next batterbattterbatterbatternohitnohitnohitnohitnohit post for your Friday enjoyment. And yes, the topic isn't about baseball (how is it that the MVP for the National League came from a team that imploded and was the only other team to finish above .500 in its division?), but about writing.

Fortunately, it's short, sweet, and you knew it complete, when you wore a younger man's clothes....'cuse me. Could I have a little mood lighting here? Just right here. Here. Not there. Here. Not over yonder down by the van next to the river, but here.

That's right (what, you thought I was going to bother you with three video links that touch upon that last paragraph?)


As I stated at the close of the last record...ummm...a post last week, I was working on a short story trilogy. I had the pic all picked out, but no title to be had, 'cause you know that's what I like. What's that? Pick you up at eight? And don't be late? Oooooooooooh man, you know what I like...heheheheh...


A short trilogy working on story Amazon for am I, and the issue I'm having is converting one of the three stories from the usual 3rd point of view (like 2/3 of the books out there), to a present tense of view (like 2/3 of this blog post for example). I'm very fortunate that this is the only story that needs editing, since the other two, Cedar Mountain and Red Stripe, were previously published at Beat To A Pulp and The Cynic Online Magazine, respectively, thus they need really no editing or tweaking to speak of.

The one curious thing about this story is that while I'm busy tightening/tweaking/converting, the word count is dropping in dribs and drabs. Previously at 7,905, it now sits about one hundred words less. Bad grammar is bad grammar, which equals poor sentence structure.


The plot of this story is a very weird day in the live of a wanna-be writer. Intertwined in the overall story is three snippets and three complete stories, so in essence, you're getting four stories for the price of one.

The plots of the other two are a bit more straightforward than that one. Cedar Mountain tells the story of the four stages of life in comparison the four seasons on the mountain. To be honest, it gained a lot of positive comments when it was published back in '09. Red Stripe tells the story of a punk-rock singer/classical guitar player called Krystal who plays with her band The Methadones (yes, blatant drug reference here).

So, that's the latest for my writing. The other project has been put to the side momentarily, as I try to get this anthology polished for Spring 2016. In the meantime, I would like to kick off a winter long contest. I need a title for my anthology, and I would like to use this pic for it.

Your mission, should you deem to undertake it, is to come up with a title based on both the pic and the three very short story descriptions. The winner gets an acknowledgement plus a pimping of your website (if you have one) in the book as well. Enter as many times as you like, 'cause this contest ends in mid-January. And don't worry, I'll mention it as often as I can.

(c) 2015 BOOKS BY G.B. MILLER. All Rights Reserved.

Hold It Now


I had a post all set to go, but after thinking about, it didn't even reach the minimum standards of a lazy high school student (party, party) let alone mine, so instead, I sent it to draft post purgatory, where it will stay for the next several days/weeks/months/etc.

At the plate, we have a pinch hitter. In the on deck circle will be our brand spanking new post sometime later this afternoon after I get home from work (half day today. be jealous, be envious, but most importantly, get a job with a flex schedule like mine).

So, this mornings pinch hitter will feature what I'm doing on my public Facebook page these days: random photo.




Talk amongst yourself and if you so desire, leave a thought about the pictures, especially if you don't like winter or perhaps, politics.

(c) 2015 BOOKS BY G.B. MILLER. All Rights Reserved.

November 17, 2015

No Sleep 'Til...Graduation?

We interrupt our new blogging (old?) journey with a late breaking blog post that does not, repeat, does not feature anything about writing. I know, I know, it's hard to believe that G.B. can actually write a post about something other than writing.

Well, my friends, he can, and more importantly he will. So without further ado, heeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeere's G.B.!!!!

Thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you.

Not too long ago, I posted a fun-filled completely silly picture of my wonderful daughter Jenelle. For those of you who missed it the first time around, here it the second time around:

Pretty silly isn't it? Yes, teenagers can possess a very strange sense of humor.

Fast forward to this past Friday, 13 November. On that Friday, the local high school had its annual homecoming dance, in which the entire student body gots dressed to the nines twice and spent the evening not really dancing with the opposite sex (at least as freshmen)

My wonderful 14 1/2 year old daughter Jenelle was no exception, as she got dressed to the nines twice. Now, what you're about to see doesn't really do her justice, as she can notoriously gun-shy when it comes to having her picture taken in certain situations, but what she had on for a dress, makeup, hair and shoes (gots to be the shoes!) made her daddy say out load, "Woah!" and under his breath, "Holy F'n Sh....I am doomed!" (seriously).

So, not only does dear old dad (picture Little Augie Doggy speaking) now not get a lot of sleep for the next four years, he'll also be channeling his inner Al Bundy.

God help us all.

(c) 2015 BOOKS BY G.B. MILLER. All Rights Reserved.

November 13, 2015

Believe It...Or Not.

After giving it a lot of thought (helps to be preoccupied with other things), I decided to keep this wonderfully insecure blog going for a little while longer. Not sure what topics I'll touch upon, but I've been thinking about getting back to the basic tenets of what I originally created for this blog in 2008 (yeah, 8 1/2 years is 8 1/2 years): writing, work, and the world around me.

So, to continue on a theme, let's begin at the beginning with writing.

As I mentioned at the close of my last post, I got one of my previously published short stories back, so to speak. Its original home was on a nifty e-zine called The Cynic, which is kind of permanent hiatus these days. For the past week or so, I was at a loss as what to do with it. After all, what do you do with a short story that has no permanent home?

Then, in a scenario that only Captain Obvious would appreciate, I remember some time ago that I wanted to do a short story anthology, and in fact, had a few stories written for it. So I said to myself, "Hey! Why not?" (I'm man of few words when it comes to dealing with myself). Off I went to my trusty XP computer to find one particular short story, specifically, the other short story that I had published at another fine outstanding e-zine, which is still going strong to this day.

I found the short story in question, and after transferring it to my new computer, figured I was all set to create a short story anthology exclusive for Amazon, much like I did with Smashwords. Sadly, I discovered that I did not have six stories, I had three. The other three were incorporated into another story, so once again I had a trilogy on my hands.

This one should be easy to do, as it clocks in at just a hair over 14K/26 pages. All I have to do is a little judicious editing, creating a good copyright page (gotta make sure to tell people that all of these stories were previously published) and few teasers to my other books. Oh yeah, a good cover pic and a good title.

There lies the rub. I suck at creating titles for my stories (Line 21, anyone?) and trying to come up with a title for short story trilogy will suck major Democrat testicles (as opposed to Republicans, which in this state need to be seen with an electronic microscope). At least for the Smashwords trilogy the pic I had came with the saying "Broken Promises".

I do have a pic that I bought some time ago from IStock when my credits were getting ready to expire, so I may try to work something in with it. The photo is thus, and let me know what you think of it.

Perhaps I can come up with a title based on the content of the stories and this picture.

Thus ends part 1,001 of G.B.'s Writing Adventures? Now! Tune in to this same Bat Channel next week for part 2,002 of G.B.'s Writing Adventures? Now! where you'll get another writing update, but you will not here warble this song.

(c) 2015 BOOKS BY G.B. MILLER. All Rights Reserved.

November 9, 2015

Wallowing In The MIrth Of Today


I's still here, wallowing in the mirth that is my day-to-day existence that we call life. Still trying to figure what I want to do here, 'cause you know, clarity is overrated.

Anywho, a writing/book related update of sorts for everyone.

I spent this weekend chipping away at the unknown story (that is, story sans title) that I originally wrote some years ago, back when I was still a semi-newbie writer. Yes, the odd thing about this story is that has no title. Imagine, writing a six chapter novel/novella with no working title connected to it, beyond calling it "My WiP!"

So, "My WiP!" it is. I've been chipping away at it and I have just a tad over 10K words written for it. As soon as I can figure out what this story is actually about (yah, very bad to write a story sans title and recognizable plot), beyond being a prequel (?) for this book, I'll let you all know.

In other news, the e-zine that had published my short story Red Stripe, has sadly gone belly-up. However, the good news is that I have all the other rights associated with that story, so now I just gotta figure out what to do with it. I am thinking of pairing it up with two others to offer a short story trilogy thingy for Amazon, like I have with Smashwords, but like everything else I plan, it requires time and money to complete.

And finally, in book news (hence the tag Books), I decided to actually BUY a book. Online. At Amazon. While this seems like a blinding case of the obvious, it really isn't. On the rare occasions that I buy books, I cut out the middle man and buy directly from the author (hence, I own almost two dozen indie/non-indie books wonderfully autographed by their talented creators). The amount of books I have bought directly from a retailer, including e-books, you can count on one hand.


So after reading a nice comment from Alex J. Cavanaugh about the availability of his work in print, I took the plunge and bought a copy of his first book (not the one listed for $1500) in his space opera series, CassaStar. As I've always said, I'm always interested in exploring new genres, so this will be a cool adventure indeed. I also bought a c.d. from Duran Duran that replaces a cassette I own, called "White Lines", which is a c.d. full of cool cover tunes from diverse artists like Lou Reed, Melle Mel, and Public Enemy. Funny side note, I found the 12" of White Lines at a Salvation Army thrift store sometime after I had bought the cassette.

Happy Moanday!

(c) 2015 BOOKS BY G.B. MILLER. All Rights Reserved.

November 4, 2015

No IWSG Post Today

Greetings and salutations to all who have stopped by with the intent of reading my latest monthly contribution to the Insecure Writer's Support Group, only to find nothing of substance or import to read beyond this post.

The past few weeks have been a serious struggle for me on the home front, mainly with work related issues (unfortunately) taking up the bulk of my down time and not family related issues (fortunately). Because of those struggles, it's been a real you-know-what (pick your own select adjective to insert) just to get any kind of blog post written.

Therefore, no monthly post for IWSG today, and perhaps none for December, which in turn will have me go on a short hiatus from this very cool blog hop. Nothing is etched in stone for December though, but life sometimes has a way of making you prioritize the various issues in your day-to-day existence.

Thanks for stopping by to read my various monthly IWSG ramblings, and if you like what you've read here, either monthly or weekly, please check out my Amazon and Smashwords pages for some quality self-published goodies, or my book blog if you dig the personal touch.

(c) 2015 BOOKS BY G.B. MILLER. All Rights Reserved.

November 3, 2015

Back To The Beginning II

If you're wondering about part 1, it's currently tucked away in draft mode, and has been for the past two weeks or so. I work on it, give up after a paragraph or two, then a few days later, reopen and insert a brand new post date, then repeat the vicious circle all over again (currently working on my 5th date for that blasted post). I tell ya, it ain't easy writing a blog post these days, but we're gonna give it the old college try yet again.

Collectively, I'm sitting at 1,600+ published blog posts, spread out over 8 blogs that covers roughly 8 1/2 years, and to tell you the honest truth, I'm running on empty here. I am simply at a complete and utter standstill with my blogging. I've covered almost every single topic known to me in some particular way at least seven times over, and to be perfectly frank, I don't know what to do anymore.

I mean, I've given some thought to retooling this blog yet again by concentrating my posts on the various aspects of my writing, but I think that would turn people off quite a bit. And if I decide to concentrate on my Tumblr blog, that might alienate readers here because Tumblr sucks up an incredible amount of bandwidth.

I don't think I'm going to go on hiatus just yet, but I really need to think/outline my future with my blogging. And if it means surrendering to the inevitable, so be it. But, before I do, I will be very thorough with my thought process and if there's a way for me to keep it going and keep myself motivated at the same time, I'll find it.

Peaches, Liquor and Tommyknockers.

(c) 2015 BOOKS BY G.B. MILLER. All Rights Reserved.