Monday, August 4, 2014

Once more unto the breach!

School begins today. Already posted my introductory post, and will need to respond to two more of those this week in order to get full credit for the week. The class only has two books required. An art history book, and The Prince by Machiavelli. I’m hoping to find both at Half-Priced books this week. Read over the syllabus and it looks to be a somewhat busy class. Two 1500+ word papers, and two 2000+ word papers, plus the weekly discussions. Not too bad, actually. I should be ok.

And with the beginning of school comes the inevitable slowing of my leisure reading, not to mention my already undisciplined writing schedule. Over the course of the summer I managed to read three novels (after a few false starts), and a graphic novel. The graphic novel was a Punisher volume collecting the first five issues of his first unlimited series in 1986, in a story arc entitled “Circle of Blood.” It was pretty good. Sort of a reboot from previous mini-series and guest shots in other comics. It begins with Frank in prison, and it just gets wild from there. The art was pretty good, with a strong Buscema influence on the breakdowns (always a good thing). And the writing was pretty stable and interesting.

I checked that out from the library, and at the same time I got a Thor collection entitled “If Asgard Should Perish” collecting Thor #242-253. This has long been on my Amazon wish list, as it is drawn by John Buscema (with a cool Jack Kirby cover image). I doubt I will buy it now, but I’m glad to be able to read it.

I had started using my Kindle a bit more lately, so I decided to just read from that instead of paperbacks for a while. I had started David Drake’s Redliners, as noted before, but I suddenly had a hankering for something a bit more fantastical. So, I queued up Wings Over Talera, book 2 of the Taleran Cycle by frequent commenter, Charles Gramlich. I had enjoyed the first book immensely, and now with a fourth book coming in the future, I figured I should read these up. Just a few chapters in, and Charles already has me. Highly recommended stuff!

On writing, I’m still plugging away at a few different projects. I mentally switched gears to my “Orcspendables” book (Orc mercenaries in space!) last week, and I am re-working the outline a bit to make the story a bit more interesting and logical. I realized in going through it that I had my protagonists just being lead through the story. So, I am re-writing parts of it to make them more pro-active. I’m also looking at it with an eye towards making it a series. For a model, I am looking at the Mack Bolan books that have been in constant production since 1968. There is a market for books like this. It may not be very large, but it’s definitely there.


Keith West said...

Good luck with school. May the curve be with you.

I've read and enjoyed quite a bit of Charles' work but haven't gotten to the Talera books yet. Need to fix that oversight.

Charles Gramlich said...

Glad you're enjoying "Wings." School will be starting for me soon enough. The prince is actually a pretty good read, I thought.