Tag Archives: artwork

My last hat stand

Some of you might remember me taking delivery of two cool hat stands about a month ago. The third one arrived last night. This one has a cross bone that is kind of cool. Here they are all together.

They are hat stands after all, so this is what they look like after I put them to work. I found the bone to be a great place for one of my bandanas.

Some hats I wear, some are just for looking at. The one on the left is a cool witch’s hat, but I tipped them all back so you could see the stands. I have a theory there is an awesome pirate hat in my future that would look great on one of these. And Captain Jack’s is just the place to acquire such a thing. If you’d like a cool hat stand, or a pirate hat checkout Captain Jack’s and ask for Jeff MacKay. Tell him I said hello.

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Some success

Yesterday I tackled the Lisa Burton interviews. I have twenty-five applicants, but only nine who've delivered the questionnaire answers. (Oops, ten now.) I worked up six shticks and sent them out. This took me six hours. I'd like to have completed them all up to the minute, but I have to face some facts.

Six hours is an effort on my days off. It will take me twenty-five weeks to post them all, so I'm ahead of the game. I hope nobody gets disappointed, but I can only do so much. It adds up to a considerable word count too.

I used part of today to work my time travel story up to 2500 words. This one is taking me way too long, and I'm feeling some pressure. Truth is, I never intended to write a time travel story. I like a challenge, so we'll see how it comes out. Writing to a theme and a target is kind of new, but fun. My MO is to get it done with enough time to make requested changes. I may only have a week of padding, but it will be enough.

I got the final Lisa poster for The Yak Guy Project, then did something crazy. I thought it might be cool to have a Lisa poster to promote the anthology with. The other authors can do what they want, but I'm going to have some artwork to promote with.

My time travel story spent a couple of months in the daydreaming phase as a Western. It didn't come out that way, and I hope it intrigues a few readers. Sorry, no cowgirl Lisa, at least for now. You might like what I changed it to.

This story is taking some serious research too. I'll bend some facts, but I want to have the rest of the details right so my changes don't stand out. Things like train times, actual hotels, and more help sell the twists.

While I was at it, I decided to order enough art to get me through the end of the year. These will be mostly for holidays wishes, but one is for my Macabre Macaroni short stories. (God, I still have to write those too.) The deadlines are spread way out, so Sean can take his time.

We had a quick date night last night, since my wife won't be here. Just a quick dinner and a beer. I had scallops with squid ink pasta… in Idaho, just imagine. It was wonderful too.

My wife headed for Nevada this morning, but not so early as to allow me to get some major work done. I dabbled and had some moderate success. I got a proof back from the formatter for The Enhanced League, and there are a few minor adjustments to make.

For the rest of this vacation, I would like to finish my short story, write three more promotional pieces for The Enhanced League, and schedule next week's Lisa Burton Radio. I might chuck some of it and publish The Enhanced League instead. No, it isn't too much, I might be able to do it all with a little bit of luck.

I don't think I'll add any more than that. The interview is all done and awaiting a link. I have ideas for the promo stuff, and I'm 2500 words shy of a short story draft. Two days is a nice pace without killing myself over it. If Enhanced League gets out next weekend, that's fine too.

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Working a different direction

I took an actual vacation day today. I've done this for writing purposes before, but not this time. This time, I wanted to fulfil some reading commitments. I've been reading one book for far to long, and wanted to finish. I also promised a friend a beta read by March. I always try to meet my deadlines, and needed to clear my slate so I could start on the new book.

I got that much done today. I have a clear deck now, but did not start the new reading. I also have 2.5 Lisa Burton Radio spots to get started on, and will probably address those tomorrow. This is the life of a modern day author.

I also worked on some blog art for my next Story Empire post. With the new group members, I'm not up again until late February, but it's still something I needed to accomplish. My Apple Pencil needed charging, so I goofed on social media while I waited.

I need to think up something for my February banner, but nothing is clicking there. I have time, and something will probably come to me. February is just a boring month. Maybe I'll make something that has nothing to do with February.

Writing takes a back seat, but reading is good exercise for a writer. In that spirit, it wasn't unproductive at all. Promotion must be done, and I'm tricking myself into thinking the radio spots are branding for me, even though the posts are about the guest authors.

I'll probably pick up my critiques and work on those to fill in the corners. Maybe I'll change my pinned tweet again. It's been a couple weeks since I changed it, and it's time.

Tonight we're going for pizza and beer. A guy can only do so much of this stuff in one stretch. Maybe the elixir of creativity will give me an idea for my next banner art.

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Forward Momentum and Planning

I walked into the front office at the writing cabin and spread the artwork across Lisa’s desk. “What do you think?”

image

“Ooh, I like it,” Lisa said. “It has some similarities to the first Notebook, but it stands out as its own book too. What’s your plan now?”

“I’m out with beta readers right now. I already got one full read, and some great catches. One of them involved names, and you missed it too.”

“My spellchecker must have seen it as a real name.”

“It is, so I changed the name completely to make it simpler.”

“When the betas are finished will you publish it then?

“Not quite. While they’re working, we have some stuff to do ourselves. You need some promotional artwork.” I spread a list of story titles in front of her.

Lisa sifted through the titles, and pointed. “This one, for sure.”

“Last Flight of the Rocket-Men? I figured that would catch your eye. You love the rocket-pack. Do you suppose it should be Rocket-Men, or Rocketmen?”

“You could ask your blog friends.”

“Good idea, we need one more. Make a star next to that one.”

“A star, really? I’ll make an electronic list and use a cute emoji. It’s the twenty-first century, you know.”

“Fine.”

“I’m not feeling some of these. There isn’t much chance for me to be fun in a poster.”

“How about Jason Fogg? It could be like a romance cover with you in the shower, and fog swirling all around. He could be kind of visible, but kind of not at the same time.”

“Veto.”

“What do you mean, veto? I’m the boss.”

“I’m not doing it.”

“I would never let you be completely nude. You know that right. Most of those book covers show a shoulder or something.”

“It isn’t that. I’m not shy or anything.”

“Okay, so why not?”

Lisa Burton

“Jason Fogg creeps me the hell out, that’s why.”

“Is it his addiction?”

“If you want to call it that.”

“He’s trying really hard to get over it.”

“I don’t think I’ll ever have confidence in him. What else do you have?”

“Not all of these will work, but that’s always the case. Parade Wave, Magpies, Practical Geology. I’m not feeling it.”

“What about Fever, or Career Move? Or Angel, I would make a great angel. I still have my Victoria’s Secret wings.”

“That’s a good reason why not. Everyone’s seen the wings already. Questing might be a good one too. Maybe you could be like a scream queen prisoner.

“That could be kind of fun. We could have done Night Bump Radio, but I borrowed the idea already.”

“I need to think about it some more. Meanwhile; why don’t you get Sean Harrington on the line and see if he has a few ideas.”

“I’m on it.”

***

Okay, so I have cover art, and it looks pretty darned good. I need to get Lisa situated, but we’ll figure something out. Question for you authors out there, do you prefer Rocket-Men, or Rocketmen?

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Chipping away at things

I allowed myself to sleep in this morning. I think I could have lasted another hour, except for my wild alarm clock. There was a duck quacking right outside my window. It's kind of funny when you think about it. I still got to sleep in, but it is what it is. What do you think possessed him to come in my yard and act like that? I expect this out of the tiny birds, but waterfowl should be better behaved.

When I got up, my daughter was already downstairs. Saturday is usually my best writing day, but this Saturday was going to have to be a compromise.

I managed to get my wallpaper changed for May. It is a little bit cramped on my iPad, but it looks great on the Mac. I'm going to assume it looks great on PCs and laptops. I'm sure it never looks good on phones, but I can't help that.

I assembled next week's Lisa Burton Radio post, and it promises to be a fun one. I also spent some time working on future posts in this arena, and it looks like I'll be able to keep it going for a while.

I checked my sales page, and it looks like a few more sales recently, and a few pages read. The sales are mostly due to the Wild Concept sale, but there are a few Experimental Notebooks, and Playgrounds mixed in. The pages read are mostly The Playground.

I received a couple of invitations, and need to ponder them. I love challenging assignments, so I'll have to see what I can come up with here. I have about a third of one in mind, and maybe my Muse will show up and inspire me for the rest.

I found a great new 5 star review for Experimental Notebook. The reviewer said, “Mr. Boyack must be a strange man. I like the way he thinks.”

You know, I probably am a strange man, because this quote gives me great pleasure. I've been cracking up about it since last night. Besides that, 5 stars is awesome! Reviews have been really hard to get lately, so I'm thrilled.

I played around a bit more with my art app. I'm getting a big kick out of messing with the blog banner. I have a bunch of ideas, but not a lot of talent. We'll all find out together if I can pull it off.

I spent some time surfing around for stuff to use in Lisa's artwork. It seems like I have more ideas than money to get the art made. This round is so I can stockpile stuff to use on the blog, Facebook, etc. I have other ideas for specific book promotions. I consider this to be research, but it isn't totally unpleasant. There are a lot of retro pinup models online these days. It kind of makes me want another antique car. I used to have one I took to car shows in the last century.

Other than that, I haven't been very productive. The new issue of Heavy Metal arrived the other day, but I haven't taken the wrapper off yet. My wife wants to take me for beer and pizza tonight, so that's good. I know it's her plan to trick me into shopping for shirts at the mall. I need some new short sleeve shirts, and beer is always good. I'm going to go along with her nefarious plan, and not tell her I'm onto her.

Hope you guys are having a great weekend.

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Feels like old times again #amwriting

I raced through social media early this morning. I wanted to force myself to take up the keyboard once more.

This led to +/- 2000 new words on The Yak Guy project. Ted, the yak guy, finally gets to be with the girl of his dreams. I have a hard time writing these scenes, but I think it came out okay. (I’m one of those males who never got a lot of female attention. Therefore, I’ll just make it up.) The story is from Ted’s point of view, so it might not be as romantic as if it were from the woman’s viewpoint.

Next on the list, Ted has to second guess the whole thing, and wonder what it all means. Then he gets to meet her dad and get the crap beat out of him. By modern standards, I ought to have him getting beat up pretty fast. I kind of want to have him question everything though. This is a conundrum for me. My plan is to write it my way, and see if it needs to be eliminated later on.

I got two requests for a review copy of The Playground, and sent both of them out. (Booyah) I hope the reviewers enjoy it. It’s a little more gritty than my usual fare. Maybe the contrast between The Playground and yak guy’s love scene is causing a short in my brain.

I got asked why I didn’t set up the 99¢ sale for Wild Concept in the UK store. It’s because I didn’t know I had to. I thought it happened everywhere. Turns out those are the only markets available to hold a sale. If you’re completely out of those markets, let me know and I’ll find a way to fix you up. Does this mean I need to start using these things £ or €? Look, it’s a man in a top hat with a big mustache =):€

The sale starts in the UK sometime on the 28th. Then I returned to WhatsApp and let them know. There isn’t much point if I don’t say something about it. Thus, the mention here too.

I sent out another Lisa Burton Radio kit, and finalized another post for one of those spots. I have several partial posts out in cyber space, tomorrow’s is pre-scheduled, and another one nearly final. I’m feeling pretty good about this spot today. We have some fun characters coming up.

Then I got a cool request to write a guest post about how I started writing short stories. This one made me think, because it just kind of happened. I love it when someone asks a question that makes me assess something. I wrote about 800-900 words of blog post and sent it out too.

Finally, I picked up my art app and messed around with my banner some more. I’m really not an artist, but I can cut out and paste things. If it looks cheesy, I’m okay with that. I’m all about the cheese here at Entertaining Stories.

I love it when I have a productive day, and wish there were more like this one.

I should probably return to social media and promote the Wild Concept Sale, and The Playground. I feel like such a book whore, but I don’t see any other way to get the word out. I’ll probably address some of that this afternoon. I found a new place to do paid promotion, but I have to make my own artwork. It’s also kind of complicated to set up. I’ve been whining about it for weeks, and would probably do better to cobble something together and quit crying about it. Getting closer on this front.

Finally, today is my daughter’s birthday. She went to Sun Valley to party with friends, but is due home today. We have plans to go to dinner somewhere tonight. That will be fun too.

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Because I’m easily amused

I have these fun new toys now, and I need to play with them. They involve the program Procreate, and my Apple Pencil.

Once upon a time, I wrote a story involving a snail. He's in The Experimental Notebook of C. S. Boyack. I had Sean Harrington paint him into this bit of Lisa art to promote the book with.

I cut out the snail from this image, and placed it into my header image. Just to amuse myself, I'm going to make him move at a snail's pace across the image, and up onto my sunglasses.

He'll move slowly, and I don't know if I'll take him any farther than that. It involves loading a new banner every couple of days.

If you want to know more about the snail. You can check him out in The Experimental Notebook for the princely sum of 99¢.

 

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