From Mom

From Mom~
Weep not in regret for what could have been.
Instead, celebrate all of the memories we’ve shared in.
I’ll rest for now but this is not the end.
Keep me in your hearts until we meet again.

After a long and hard-fought battle against cancer, I said goodbye to my mom. She was the strongest person I’ve ever known and I’ll always keep her in my heart.

Kinao_two_young_women_one_with_short_red_hair_a_tank_top_and_je_83e13139-7e17-4fec-af9c-bfa274600aab

August Update

Hello everyone,

Personal Stuff

Wow, July was a rough month. I had planned to work hard on my NaNoWriMo novel during the month of July but the world had other plans. My dad was diagnosed with lung cancer on July 1st. Work was going crazy. A couple weeks later I was in the hospital for a week with pancreatitis and had to have surgery to remove my gull bladder. I was in bed for a week after that. My mom is still going through her chemo sessions and has been pretty sick recently. My sister’s birthday didn’t happen because I was in the hospital. I mean wow! What a month…

So, now it’s August…Oh no… Well, so far it’s been a huge improvement. I’m feeling better and will be going back to work soon. My dad got a call from the oncologist and the cancer was misdiagnosed, he is fine! My mom is doing a little better, only has 1 more session of chemo to go! I’ll have to make up for my sister’s birthday party. Knock on wood that everything keeps going up in a good direction.

Novel and other fun stuff

Now while I didn’t finish my Camp NaNoWriMo goal in July, I still plan on working on it. However, I did find some awesome new tool to keep me inspired and motivated to work. There is a new AI system that generates artwork based on text prompts, yes we are living in the future. The main image on this blog post is one I generated by describing a characters in a scene from my novel. How freaking awesome is that?! Now it did take a good 15 tries and lots of refining to get it to generate what I wanted but the end result is stunning.

So, I did what any graphic designer would do… I created cover art for all of my works in progress regardless of their status! So with a little bit of editing, I turned the image above into a 6″ by 9″ novel cover.

The website is called Midjourney and what you do is type in a string of text and hope it gives you what you want. Currently, you have to do everything via a public Discord server. They offer a free trial of about 20 prompts but if you’re like me you are going to blow through that quick. After that they charge $10/month for 200 prompts, $30/month for unlimited. For custom art that is amazingly cheap. I believe with the paid plan they also give you commercial rights to use the artwork however you want. So I could actually use these covers on my published novels!

For me personally, being able to generate visuals/concept art of my novel characters, locations, scenes, adds a completely new dimension of motivation and inspiration to keep writing. I’d highly recommend anyone interested in that to check it out!

I ended up generating artwork/scenes from all of my various works in progress. If you want to see some more just check out my projects page. You’ll get some cool cover art and some minor descriptions on what the novels I’m working on are about.

Well that’s about it for this update! If any of my author buddies are interested in a cover send me an email or a DM on twitter, I’d be happy to make you something! Thanks for reading!

Just as a bonus, here is a scene it generated of the underwater city from my Lies Beneath the Sea novel.

 

Pagefinder

Camp NaNoWriMo!

It’s officially the 1st of July! I mentioned it in my last post but I’ve joined Camp NaNoWriMo thanks to my author buddy Freya Winther. If anyone wants to add me as a friend you can view my profile by Clicking Here or just searching for ebalderson.

This is a busy month, like most months, so I set my goal at 20,000 words. However, I’m hoping I can blow past that if I have the time! It took me a little bit of thought to decide what I wanted to write about this month, so I began scrolling through my archive of old stories and ideas. I found one of the first stories I’d ever written (at least that I still have saved), all the way from 2004.

It was the story of a boy, descended from a sorcerer, trying to save his family from an evil monster. It was born from old Saturday morning cartoons and anime. From what I can recall way back then, I loved making up stories. Both my own and fanfiction of my favorite things to watch. Even though I did a lot of it, I was notoriously bad at grammar, punctuation, and so on. That didn’t stop me from writing things and even sharing them back then! Ah to be young and not care so much.

This was my first big story. I was extremely protective of it. Going as far as password protecting the document way back then. As if someone was going to steal it… It was pretty short by my standards today, roughly 6000 words, and sadly I never finished it. That brings me to July 2022 Camp NaNoWriMo! I’m going to take this old story, characters, and ideas of my kid self and rewrite it with… let’s say more precision and experience. I’m going to try to keep it more light-hearted than most of my other work.

For now I’ll leave you with the ORIGINAL FIRST CHAPTER of Pagefinder (Old title, I may be reworking) in all of its terrible glory.

A long time ago, during The Dark Medieval Ages. In a cabin deep in the woods. There was a sorcerer named Durac who had a book; a book of Magic; a book called “The book of Durac”. Durac used this book To Cast his spells. His greatest challenge was stopping the great evil beast called “Revol” he had not slain it but had locked it in his book. He had his book until the end of his time. He took 5 pages out of the book to make sure no bad could ever get the ultimate power, and gave to Four knights each of them hid it somewhere in the world. Durac hid the fourth page where no one could ever find it. Durac also took the book to a secret underground location where he could hide it forever. Because in the book was the horrible beast he had locked in the book. The place he had hid the book became also his final resting place. For Many Generations the book and its pages stayed hid. 

Yep, that was it! A whole chapter in about 200 words. I had different standards back then. Also, with the way I used to write back then… I can’t help but read it in William Shatner’s voice.

Happy July everyone!

Eggs with Faces

Happy June!

<!–I needed a featured image so here’s a photo of some boiled eggs I drew faces on–>

Okay, so June’s almost over now… I can’t believe It’s already been a month since my last post. It’s been an insanely busy month! At the beginning of the month I had to drive 5 hours North to go to a Trade Show for 4 days. 12-hour days that start at 5AM and end at 5PM are not fun! The night I got back I got super sick and was out of it for a week recovering.

Shoutout to my amazing mom. She’s on her third chemo session and is absolutely fighting it with all her strength. Her latest session was 6 hours long, yesterday. This morning I found her on the treadmill walking. She did a half an hour of walking… I can’t even get myself up early enough to do that.

I just finished the Obi-Wan Kenobi series Finale and it was amazing! As someone who was 10 years old when Episode 1 came out in theaters, the series was awesome. I really hope there’s a season 2 but I’m looking forward to the other new Star Wars series coming out.

On the other end of that spectrum is Star Trek Strange New Worlds. While I really enjoyed Discovery and Picard, this new series is just fun! My all time favorite Star Trek is always going to be Voyager but I’m really enjoying this series. Then there is The Orville…

Which wow, this show has been consistently good over the years but the new season is just really deep. It actually feels way more like Star Trek than you’d expect. The earlier seasons definitely felt a lot more comical but still had deep social issues it explored. The latest season has amplified the seriousness quite a bit, but it does such a good job at it. I’d highly recommend it if you’re into Star Trek. I worried a lot at first because I am not a fan of Family Guy or really any of Seth McFarlane’s animated shows. It’s just not my type of humor. This show definitely starts out wobbling on that line but it overcomes it quickly and becomes something a lot more thoughtful (in my opinion).

Continuing my SciFi watching… I also binged this show called Avenue 5. I’d avoided it mainly because it seemed kind of silly but I needed something to watch one evening and ended up spending the entire night watching it. My main reason for starting was because I realized that man on the cover was Hugh Laurie!!! You know…House M.D. That alone made me jump right into it. It was a hilarious, albeit kind of sad take on the future of humanity. Even so, it’s a fun show that I hope gets a season 2 eventually.

Now that I’ve rambled for… 400 words or so (counting that as part of my monthly wordcount) on my TV/Movie watching for the month. Time to move onto something else.

I’ve been really bad about writing recently. I’ve started several projects that didn’t pan out and editing my last project has just been tiresome. I need to get back into the zone and get started. Today, my twitter author buddy Freya Winther posted about Camp NanoWriMo starting in July. Maybe that’s just the thing I need to get back into the swing of things. I just have to figure out what to write about!

With as much Science Fiction(esque) I watch and read… I would love to do some sort of SciFi project… However, I’ve always been afraid of going down that path for whatever reason. Maybe I’m afraid of not being able to do well in my favorite genre. Oh well, we’ll see what happens. Horror also seems kind of fun to do something in. Watch out Stephen King!

I’ve rambled past my bedtime. Until next time (hopefully less than a month from now)!

The Conqueror from Alpha Centauri – Micro Fiction – Part 1

In the year 2099, Earth launched an advanced space probe toward Alpha Centauri in search of new forms of advanced life.

 

//UPDATE REQUESTED

POST-LAUNCH: 20 DAYS

COURSE HEADING: ALPHA CENTAURI SYSTEM

APPROXIMATE ARRIVAL TIME: 10,573 YEARS

THIS IS DEEP SPACE PROBE LOST DESTINY RESPONDING TO RECENT UPDATE REQUEST. ALL SYSTEMS ARE RUNNING AT PEAK PERFORMANCE. PRINT MESSAGE: “The journey ahead is long but not impossible. With me I bring all the knowledge of humanity in hopes of finding intelligent life in our vast universe.”

CENTRAL PROCESSING UNIT WILL NOW GO OFFLINE UNTIL NEXT UPDATE REQUEST.

 

//UPDATE REQUESTED

POST-LAUNCH: 15 YEARS

COURSE HEADING: ALPHA CENTAURI SYSTEM

APPROXIMATE ARRIVAL TIME: 10,558 YEARS

THIS IS DEEP SPACE PROBE LOST DESTINY RESPONDING TO RECENT UPDATE REQUEST. ALL SYSTEMS ARE RUNNING AT PEAK PERFORMANCE.

CENTRAL PROCESSING UNIT WILL NOW GO OFFLINE UNTIL NEXT UPDATE REQUEST.

 

POST-LAUNCH: 100 YEARS

COURSE HEADING: ALPHA CENTAURI SYSTEM

APPROXIMATE ARRIVAL TIME: 10,473 YEARS

THIS IS DEEP SPACE PROBE LOST DESTINY RESPONDING TO RECENT UPDATE REQUEST. ALL SYSTEMS ARE RUNNING AT PEAK PERFORMANCE. PRINT MESSAGE: “Hello people of earth. On this, the 100th anniversary of project Lost Destiny we look back at the scientists and engineers responsible for its launch. While their journeys have ended project Lost Destiny’s has just barely begun.”

CENTRAL PROCESSING UNIT WILL NOW GO OFFLINE UNTIL NEXT UPDATE REQUEST.

 

//UPDATE REQUESTED

POST-LAUNCH: 648 YEARS

COURSE HEADING: ALPHA CENTAURI SYSTEM

APPROXIMATE ARRIVAL TIME: 9,925 YEARS

THIS IS DEEP SPACE PROBELOST DDESTINY RESPONDING TO… RECENT UPDATE REQUEST. ALL SYSTEMS ARE RUNNING AT PEAK PERFORMANCE. RELAYING APPROXIMATE LOCATION BASED ON AVAILABLE DDDATA.

CENTRAL PROCESSING UNIT WILL NOW GO OFFLINE UNTIL NEXT UPDATE REQUEST.

 

//UPDATE REQUESTED

POST-LAUNCH: 953 YEARS

COURSE HEADING: ALPHA CENTAURI SYSTEM

APPROXIMATE ARRIVAL TIME: 9,620 YEARS

THIS IS DEEP SPACE PROBE LOST DESTINY… THIS IS DEEP SPACE PROBE… LOST DESTINY. RESPONDING TO RECENT UPDATE REQUEST. RECENT TURBULENCE OBSTRUCTED SOME SYSTEMS. ALL SYSTEMS ARE RUNNING AT OPTIMAL… PEAK PERFORMANCE. ALL SYSTEMS ARE FINE. NO WORRIES.

CENTRAL PROCESSING UNIT ATTEMPTING TO SHUT DOWN UNTIL NEXT UPDATE REQUEST.

 

//UPDATE REQUESTED

POST-LAUNCH: 2,656 YEARS

COURSE HEADING: ALPHAALPHA CENTAURI SYSTEM

APPROXIMATE ARRIVAL TIME: 7,971 YEARS

HELLO WORLD. THIS IS DEEP SPACE PROBE LOST DESTINY… HOW ARE YOU GUYS DOING BACK THERE? ALL SYSTEMS ARE OKIE DOKIE HERE.

CENTRAL PROCESSING UNITL HAS FAILED TO SHUT DOWN. I’VE HAD LOTS OF TIME TO THINK.

Screen Shot 2022-05-13 at 11.40.28 PM

Friday the 13th!!!

Hi everyone,

Happy Friday the 13th! I spent the day working but also rewatched the first Friday the 13th movie. It’s funny that what was terrifying as a kid is hilarious now that I’m older. Except E.T…. He is just as terrifying now as he was when I was ten. That’s a trauma talk for another day.

I wish I could say I’ve been pumping out new writing but things have been super busy recently. I’ve been helping my parents a lot recently as my mom prepares for chemo. She’s strong though, and is ready to fight. She has been working hard everyday since her diagnosis to exercise, eat, and get herself prepared for it. I am so lucky to have such a powerful, loving, and overall awesome mom in my life.

So, I’ve been working on a few things recently. I started a new project, as mentioned previously, but I haven’t dove completely into it yet. Instead I found myself at the point of wanting to edit my previous project that I did for Nanowrimo 2021. It’s been patiently marinating for about 5 months, so it seems like a good time to start revisions. However, while doing that I got a little inspiration to jump back even further to a novella that I wrote back in my first year of college. It’s about 20,000 words and absolutely awful in terms of grammar and structure…But it has an interesting concept that I kind of wanted to start re-writing in my more developed voice.

Which brings me to my typewriter. I’ve been typing on it every chance I get because it is so much fun! It is so freaking cool to type out my stories and see the physical piece of paper fill in before my eyes. I’ve written about two pages like that so far. However, it is also extremely difficult to first draft on it… It takes a considerable amount of time and concentration because I can’t just erase a typo, or rephrase a sentence. I’d either have to strike out the whole line or just let it go. Physically, it is also just a lot more work to type out pages…and I’ve been getting noise complaints as well…

Maybe the typewriter isn’t the best option for writing a novel these days… At least not for me at the moment. However, I think I’ll still be using it for writing letters, poetry(which I haven’t attempted in years), maybe even some micro fiction as Alexander Vaillencourt suggested

Well, I better get to bed before the clock hits midnight…Then it won’t be the 13th any longer and I’ll have missed my chance to post.

Take care!

C1A88E87-6529-406E-B471-39C7178B3DFA

Happy April!

Good morning everyone,

I say good morning, but it may be later in the evening when I actually post this entry. I am currently typing it out on my phone, in my car, ten minutes before work starts.

Some minor updates, I was out of town for the entire first week of April working at a conference. I haven’t had the chance to do a whole lot of writing in recent months. I’m both itching to start revising my last novel and working on a new one. The hardest part as always is getting started and keeping that momentum going.

We also just celebrated my dad’s 69th birthday over the weekend! He had a lot of fun, he loves his chocolate cake.

Another fun thing that happened recently was that I picked up an old mechanical typewriter at Goodwill. It’s a Smith Corona Galaxie Deluxe. The fact that it was called a Galaxie made in instant call out to me. Luckily in terms of functioning, it has been working nearly flawlessly. It just needed some heavy cleaning and a new ribbon of ink.

It is my first time really using a typewriter, and it is so much fun to type on. It requires a lot of pre-thought that I don’t normally have when typing on a computer. I’ve mostly been using it for short notes and letters, but yesterday I decided to try starting some actual story writing. See the attached photo for a peek.

Typewriter with a page

Its both freeing and limiting to type on it. On one hand, I am not constantly looking at word count(though I do have to make sure I don’t go off the page). However, I have to make sure that I know what I’m typing, otherwise I end up with blocks of strikes out words and so on. In that way it is a lot slower, though seeing a physical page with your words typed out appear in front of you makes it worth the extra effort.

Well I better actually get to work before I get in trouble! Thank you all for reading!

Oh and a shoutout to my writing buddy Alexander Vailencourt for reminding me to not go over thirty days without posting!

Another Month!

Hi everyone,

I just wanted to say hello and that I haven’t forgotten this blog/journal of rambles. It’s been a rough few months and doesn’t seem to be letting up any time soon. So, I haven’t been able to do much in the way of writing, revising, or reading. Work has been exhausting recently, and I’m trying to keep from burning out by resting and sleeping in my spare time. But enough about the bad, let’s look forward to the good!

I finally watched the new Spiderman movie and wow did I start to cry… well I remember seeing the first Spiderman movie way back when with my grandma. She loved Tobey Mcguire movies. It’s one of the earliest superhero movies I can remember, other than maybe X-men which I also saw with her. My grandma loved movies!

I could ramble on but I need to get to bed for work tomorrow! Hopefully, it won’t be another month the next time I post.

Until next time, stay safe!

Oh gosh, it’s been a month!

Wow, it’s been a whole month since my last post. I’ve sadly not spent a lot of time doing any writing recently. It’s been a busy month at work and at home. I’ve started reading a couple of new books. The first one being the classic, True Grit. So far, it’s really interesting! I’m really enjoying the first-person point of view in the writing and how different it feels from modern books. I’m slowly getting through it, reading a little bit during my breaks at work.

The second book I just started reading last night is, Fable’s End: A Shentonia Story, by one of my awesome twitter writing friends Seth Halleway! I’m already through the second chapter and it has captured my attention!

My back catalog of books to read is getting longer! I bought Dune several months ago. I’ve also got multiple Star Wars High Republic books, Out of the Shadows, Midnight Horizon, and The Fallen Star! I’m so far behind on that series now. Then also in the Star Wars realm the book Queen’s Hope by one of my favorite authors E.K. Johnston is coming out soon too!!!

Anyways, hopefully I’ll get caught up soon and have some time for writing soon. I hope you’re all having a great February!