Cheeseburger Gothic

Project management and the arts

Posted February 15 into Writing by John Birmingham

Just did a really fascinating interview with a project manager. (Surprisingly enough, on commission for a feature in Project Manager magazine). It was fascinating because although this guy came out of the Navy and into mining and marine engineering, almost everything he said was directly applicable to managing a writing career, especially juggling a couple of different projects such as books, columns etc. For once, I'm actually looking forward to transcribing the interview.

15 Responses to ‘Project management and the arts’

Rhino swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted February 16
Project Managers, for the most part, are Gods Among Men.

Before we were wed, I provided my then fiancee with a process flow chart of relationships so that she would have a clearly defined process of inputs and outputs.

She laughed and ripped in half.

A typical management response.

Leftarc ducks in to say...

Posted February 16
I recently built a wood fired oven, and as I say, I had to PM the shit out of it. There was a schedule, bill of materials (broken down into capex and opex costs) and a risk budget. Mrs/Fin Controller was impressed.

damian asserts...

Posted February 17
You still need a stakeholder map and a business change plan. Did you buy beer with the risk budget?

GhostSwirv puts forth...

Posted February 23

Rhino reckons ...

"She laughed and ripped it in half"


I imagined the project flow chart of relationships to be as large and thick as a Telephone Book.

I still visualised Better Half of Rhino tearing it shreds.

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jason would have you know...

Posted February 16
Part of my full time role is project management. Unfortunately I have been unable to use the skills and experience from this role in the writing process. It's a lot easier to work with paid employees than loved ones when it comes to getting things done.

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Leftarc mutters...

Posted February 16
JB,
Your book "How to be a Writer' is a good book to add to one's PM toolkit. Deadlines, timeboxing, customer engagement/management, and conflicting priorities are all part of a Project Manager's remit (trying to replicate the routine of Hunter S Thompson as you described is more of an aspirational goal though). At the end of the day, if you organise stuff, you are using project management skills. And that is not to demean this dark art, as I am one. Looking forward to reading your interview.

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Surtac is gonna tell you...

Posted February 16
What the Rhino said.

Forty years of working in IT has taught me that good PMs are hard to find but are definitely worth keeping and feeding.

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Rhino has opinions thus...

Posted February 17
I tend to channel Mr. Wolf from Pulp Fiction in my professional life. He is the ultimate PM.

damian mutters...

Posted February 17
I'd have pegged Mr Wolf more as a Delivery Manger.

Nocturnalist reckons...

Posted February 18
Wolf in the Manger.

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Vovchara ducks in to say...

Posted February 17
there is no reason why it shouldn't be. Project management is basically management of resources to achieve set goals. No matter if you build bridge, house, road, computer or write a book, piece of software etc. you 've got to have clearly defined end result. And a path to it. And every step on it is an abstract mile stone, pretty much every part of said management is an abstract concept.

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Dirk ducks in to say...

Posted February 18
*nods*

Being one myself (even got a mastersdegree in it) I only can underline that ...

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Ceramic ducks in to say...

Posted February 20
I've made a project plan for my writing (dare I say it?) career.
Its got basic things like a budget, phases and timeline, but also things for business planning. Future projects, compatable services, marketing plan, and am working on a competative analysis.
I'd love a link for your interview if its online.

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Aaron is gonna tell you...

Posted February 20
As a creative person and now dad I can definitely vouch for the benefits of embracing organisation. When I first started in radio my fear was how will I keep generating the content but I quickly learned I had mire to gain from the organisation skills picked up in previous jobs. It's ordering the chaos to allow for some actual work to get done. I am actually doing a degree in project management. I couldn't do it without project management skills!

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Justin is gonna tell you...

Posted February 20
well JB, seems you are onto something here, something about your writing style appears to attract us PM types.
never knew so many of us lurked around this forum.

Here's a bit of PM humor for you;
What is the collective noun for a group of project managers?

A 'Concern'

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I think we should all win a Hugo

Posted January 18 into Writing by John Birmingham

Is anyone eligible to nominate works, or to vote in the Hugo's? It occurs to me that not only should Cady and Smith try their luck (granted, they have zero chance), but the Hugos have categories for fan writing and everyone in Buttecracke is eligible! I don't see why that crazy Vos or Vox or whatever the fuck his name is should be the only one gaming this system.

I'm not a member of WorldCon or any of the baby cons that would afford nominating rights, but maybe somebody here is.

The relevent link is here.

24 Responses to ‘I think we should all win a Hugo’

Ceramic swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted January 18
Ha, certainly not mine though.
I'd like for the stories to be updated with new edits first! I'm changed the ending a bit for example. Very glad the book is doing so well!

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Surtac has opinions thus...

Posted January 18
Yeah. I have an attending membership for Worldcon in Helsinki this year.

But I won't be going. The original plan had me and Eldest Daughter going, but she has decided she wants to go back to Hong Kong instead at a similar time of year. So no Finland with a side trip to St Petersburg for me this year.

And no more US based Worldcons for me either while the Trumpenfuhrer is in charge. I'll have to wait and see whether Dublin or New Zealand get up in 2019 or 2020.

But happy to use my nomination powers for good as suggested. Hmmn. Haven't seen nominations actually open yet - it must be soon though.

John Birmingham has opinions thus...

Posted January 18
ALL HAIL SURTAC.

Stephen asserts...

Posted January 18
Surtac,

nominating has opened - I got my email about it on the ninth of January. Check your mail and spam folders - it should be from hugos@worldcon.fi

There is no pin this year though, you get a unique URL to go to instead. If you can't find the email, send a message to hugohelp@worldcon.fi

Nocturnalist would have you know...

Posted January 18
Surtac, if you're not going to use a full membership I might know some people who'd be interesting in buying it off you, or in doing a part buy/part trade for an associate membership. Let me know if you'd like me to ask around.

Surtac reckons...

Posted January 18
I want to keep at least a supporting membership so I can nominate and vote. My daughter's youth attending membership may be available - I don't think she wants to follow through with actual voting. I'll check with her and advise in here later.

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MickH asserts...

Posted January 18
A Hugo for fan fiction?...wow
something to shoot for (Q7S) :D

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Nocturnalist reckons...

Posted January 18
Pretty sure the Fan Writer category is not actually for fan fiction, but for the sort of thing that goes into the fanzine and newsletter community that that particular convention circuit grew out of - reviews, critical writing, news from the genre scene. Writing about the stories rather than the stories.

The parade, I rains on it.

Surtac swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted January 18
Yes. The Night Manager is correct. It's not for fan fiction, but for other fannish activities. It's also not a category I usually pay much attention to.

But there's nothing to stop me nominating Girl for best novel, right? I mean it was was one of my fave books of the year after all.

John Birmingham ducks in to say...

Posted January 19
I would not stop you.

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Abe Frellman reckons...

Posted January 18
Slightly off topic, but who's doing your PR these days, Nick Earls??

http://blog.booktopia.com.au/2017/01/16/vote-finals-favourite-australian-author-2017/?utm_medium=Email&utm_source=ExactTarget&utm_campaign=_20170118_VoteNowInPoll_amgroupa

John Birmingham has opinions thus...

Posted January 18
Meh, I just couldn't be fucked organising The 10000

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Kristophr asserts...

Posted January 18
I wish you luck.

The "truefans" have made it clear that anyone who is politically incorrect in their eyes will be no-awarded.

They even no-awarded Butcher, the Dresden Files author, because people not in their little club like got him nominated.

Murphy_of_Missouri has opinions thus...

Posted January 18
Lost cause trying to push that narrative. Just wait five seconds for someone to tie it all to Gamergate.

Kristophr asserts...

Posted January 19
The no-awards happened. Simple as that.

I wish you all luck. I would like to see this anthology hugo-ed. I rather liked it.

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jason asserts...

Posted January 19
At the risk of sounding like I am sucking up something savage...

I think the best thing about Butte Crack was the ability to fully engage people in a fantasy world and let them be a real part of it with the participation of the author. Is there a category which would recognise the new model for fan interaction, so the model rather than (or as well as) the book?

John Birmingham is gonna tell you...

Posted January 23
I doubt it. Eric Flint is very encouraging of fan writers and baby authors in his 1630s world, but that's still a very controlled trade publishing project.

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Legless mumbles...

Posted January 19
I can't fucking believe it! You only went and included my monster trucks story.

I'm a cocking published author!

I'm so chuffed I could lay an egg!


Thank you. Thank you a million times

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Kristophr mutters...

Posted January 20
Go for it, John.

Real fans should be able to nominate good work without having a clique of holier-than-thou "trufen" no awarding them.

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ShaneAlpha puts forth...

Posted January 20
Is it wrong to dream of beating Adam Baldwin to death with my Hugo?
Yes.
But it's oh so enjoyable.

Murphy_of_Missouri would have you know...

Posted January 21
Have you actually seen what Adam Baldwin looks like? I suspect that contest would not go the way you might imagine.

Sudragon swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted January 22
He robbed from the rich and he gave to the poor.
Stood up to the man and he gave him what for.

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Brother PorkChop asserts...

Posted January 23
I'm with Legless. Astonished and egg laying. But more than ever amazed by what authors create. Go on, someone nominate it for the award. A nomination would be amazing in itself.

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So, I'm thinking of doing fan fiction collections for AoT and The Disappearance

Posted January 13 into Writing by John Birmingham

Could be a long lead time. Six months for submissions.

Anyone interested?

57 Responses to ‘So, I'm thinking of doing fan fiction collections for AoT and The Disappearance’

insomniac puts forth...

Posted January 13
Anyone interested? What sort of question is that? I think you'll be overwhelmed with submissions.

Paul_Nicholas_Boylan reckons...

Posted January 13
Absolutely yes for both.

Dear god, the possibilities are just mind blowing.

There is a bar fight in Honolulu that I've been imagining for years. Years. It is what brought me into your orbit in the first place.

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jl would have you know...

Posted January 13
I think there will be a lot of interest in this. A lot.

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trib reckons...

Posted January 13
Up for it. Totes.

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Paul_Nicholas_Boylan ducks in to say...

Posted January 13
There is already a significant amount of fan fic out there pertaining to the Disappearance universe. I wrote two. The one about the kid alone in Calgary is dear to me. Will we be allowed to submit these previous efforts?

Therbs mumbles...

Posted January 13
Just don't tell anyone.

John Birmingham ducks in to say...

Posted January 13
Resubmission is fine.

Therbs puts forth...

Posted January 13
I'm editing one of my old ones. Lots of red pen scribbles and marks. Very messy.

Therbs puts forth...

Posted January 13
Paul, that Calgary one is definitely worthy of publishing in an anthology.

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Therbs asserts...

Posted January 13
Grand idea.

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Peter Bradley swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted January 13
Yep, already sketching out ideas!
Yes PNB I am way behind some in that respect!

Paul_Nicholas_Boylan swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted January 13
I have a hunch you gonna catch up fast.

Word to the wise: stay away from graphic descriptions of gay sex. I'm not saying there is anything wrong with it, but I can tell you from experience that JB tends to edit the hell out of it. I'm not complaining. I admit being a bit upset that JB edited all of the gay sex out of my Butte Crack County anthology contribution, but I am man enough to admit it made it a better story.

Peter Bradley mutters...

Posted January 17
What!!!!! I have just mapped out a magnificent scene of a cavort involving cat masks, peacock feathers and giant cream sponges.

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Aaron reckons...

Posted January 13
Don't forget the zombie section

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Surtac swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted January 13
Yeah. I'm in.

I'd started an AoT thing some years back but never got around to finishing it.

Sounds like a perfect opportunity to drag it out again and have another go.

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Gilligan asserts...

Posted January 13
And my axe!

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DaveC reckons...

Posted January 13
Yhup, and yhup.

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jason has opinions thus...

Posted January 13
Any brief for the stories?

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Vallon Davis puts forth...

Posted January 13
You've read my mind. I'm in, where do I send my submission once it's completed??

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Josh has opinions thus...

Posted January 14
I'd be interested maybe doing something about the Mediterranean theatre of operations in the AOT universe. I feel like that is quite a blank slate seeing as 3 AOT novels didn't really mention North Africa, Malta, Scilly, Italy etc. However, it could be quite difficult to come up with feasible military operations seeing as now the sides are aware of what happened originally & new tech isn't going to play a big part as it's too soon after the Transition to really get new toys to the front line.

An easier alternative would probably be to cover the battle of the English Channel from the view point of the pilots to fit in with the second AOT novel.

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Edward Osman swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted January 14
Stille not able to get Angels of Vengeance in german, need someone for the translation?

P.s. I was asking this years ago.

Greetings

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NBlob mutters...

Posted January 14
Hmm.
Need to have a little think.

NBlob mumbles...

Posted January 14
Btw,
Carriage
Returns
Now
Work.
Thanks
Dan

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Don Bagert mumbles...

Posted January 14
Oh, yes! I've been begging for an AoT flashback/short story set near the end of Final Impact, which would have Roosevelt, Kolhammer and other higher-ups arguing about whether or not the U.S. should be unloading their nuclear arsenal after the Soviets emptied theirs by dropping their remaining three on Tokyo (which of course, they didn't), so I guess I just better write it myself LOL

I'd also like to write about impact the Transition had on sports in post-war North America.

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AuntyLou reckons...

Posted January 14
Ok...I hate you all...with your writing skills and clever ideas! I can't manage to successfully submit a postcard. JB if you want a rough edit process, I'm your girl. Ready and willing to serve.

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Turlogh Dubh O'Brien ducks in to say...

Posted January 15
Yes. Yes. Yes. I will transfer my mental notes to paper/screen and wait for the day!

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Michael Papagermanos asserts...

Posted January 15
Absolutely.

When can I start?

John Birmingham reckons...

Posted January 16
Why haven't you started yet?

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HAVOCK21 would have you know...

Posted January 15
FKN BANZAI!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!



FK YES!

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Rhino mumbles...

Posted January 16
So, what you are really saying is that I need to dust off my Rhino, Agent of Echelon work?

DarrenBloomfield has opinions thus...

Posted January 17
*like*

Peter Bradley is gonna tell you...

Posted January 17
Can I please request a scene that involves the petting of kitty cats?

Rhino mumbles...

Posted January 18
Well, duh. Of course.

Rhino is gonna tell you...

Posted January 18
Also, it is meant to be tongue in cheek. Pink Pantherish in fact.

I hope that I can pull it off. LOL.

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MickH reckons...

Posted January 16
Im going to look through the archives and pull out some of the stories I wrote and had posted on the mini burger

I think I lost my "Skip" story though :(

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DarrenBloomfield would have you know...

Posted January 17
I so have a story in my head scaled up from some smart alec comment i posted here when they came out - about one thing that would take off downtime would be Twitter - and could you imagine what Stalin's Tweets would look like? Put the Donald to shame!

I'm willing to give it a (butte) crack!

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Dirk puts forth...

Posted January 17
I'm pondering a small social economic piece on the situation in Europe. Maybe from the perspective of Willem Drees, for all intents and purposes the Dutch PM in the 1950's. With a few cameo's blended in maybe. I'll pump it over the wires when it's ready JB ...

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Rhino asserts...

Posted January 18
Oh, shit, the heavy hitters are weighing in.

Paul_Nicholas_Boylan swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted January 18
I want to do a tender story of a young girl's coming of age - and then the wave hits! It will be hilarious in a raunchy, sophomoric sense.

Rhino mumbles...

Posted January 18
She should see him driving up to get her so that they can elope ... and she sees him driving up and the wave hits ... and it stops before it gets her.

DarrenBloomfield mutters...

Posted January 18
man, that's all poignant and shit. I'd read it.

Paul_Nicholas_Boylan asserts...

Posted January 18
Let me think about it. I adore cosmic practical jokes.

Rhino mumbles...

Posted January 19
do eeeeet

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insomniac reckons...

Posted January 18
Is it possible for the wave to just get part of you? Say you had your hand out and the wave came up and turned it to goop but the rest of you was unscathed.

Nocturnalist asserts...

Posted January 18
From memory that'd be a little tricky - it undulated in and out, and wasn't there a report of someone who got too close and it sort of arced out and caught them?

Then again, there are plenty of observations that the Wave was horribly hard to study and draw hard and fast conclusions about, so it might behave differently in different places or under different circumstances.

That or perhaps someone gets just close enough for it to whip out at them and clip their hand but they get away before it gets any further up their arm?

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Surtac mutters...

Posted January 18
I'm gonna go back and revisit the AoT thing I did for the original FanFic Festival all those years ago (if I can find the file - it's at least three PCs ago) and my second piece will be the one I have started but not finished. I can at least remember the basic story for that one.

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Rhino swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted January 19
My fanfic from back in the day would be too risque. It had gang dolphin rape.

Therbs swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted January 19
I have one which I'm tidying up that includes your character as a key player. I'll forward it to you for clearance prior to submission.

Rhino puts forth...

Posted January 20
I'm sure that it will be a dignified and significant role as befits my status.

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Legless mumbles...

Posted January 19
I'm up for it.

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Oldy reckons...

Posted January 20
Hell yes!

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MuddyRunner puts forth...

Posted January 21
Just finished Butte Crack and was hugely impressed by the ingenuity and creativity of all the contributors. No details because SPOILERS. I wouldn't normally consider attempting to write fiction - tech docs are more my forte - but after BC I would definitely have a go trying out for AoT. In fact, I have the germ of an idea already - something set in Blighty - but no more on that in case someone steals my idea and does a much better job of it :-)

MuddyRunner would have you know...

Posted January 21
Two ideas now. God I love the JBverse.

John Birmingham puts forth...

Posted January 23
Go for it.

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Brother PorkChop ducks in to say...

Posted January 23
Yip, on it.

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Next book

Posted November 16 into Writing by John Birmingham

I started blocking out the plot and character arcs for The Cruel Stars this week. I'd been tossing up whether to write WW3.1 first, but Cruel Stars is due in New York in April next year and with the holidays coming up my productivity will soon fall off a cliff. We're scheduled to spend some time in Sydney during January (I will try to set aside a day for a Burger catch up) and the getting kids back to school is usually a week's worth of faffing around too.

Long story short, I'm going to knock over this traditionally published title first, then swing into 3.1 in February. That should see it released in April/May.

Meantime, I have the Hooper fanfic project to release for Xmas. It'll go free to everyone in the bookclub, then probably sit at two bucks in the stores.

Come January I'll release all of the Stalin's Hammer books in one volume. Including Rome. I can't release my own copy of Rome, because the rights remain trapped with the legacy publsihers. . But I can rerelease it as part of an 'anthology'. I think it'll make a nice one, and I'll do a print on demand version too. Audible have made an offer on the audiobook rights.

I'm enjoying the rapid fire project switching of the last few months. Paris, Girl in Time and now Cruel Stars are all very different projects and I've found each to be a pleasant change from the other.

Not sure whether to put Cruel Stars through the beta process. It really does improve the story, but I'm mindful of not overloading everyone and, to be honest, it's the publisher's job anyway.

Happy to take counsel on that.

Also keen to here from the beta crew how they found Dropbox Paper. Some hated it. Some liked it. I had one or two scarifying moments when it seemed to delete the whole project.

27 Responses to ‘Next book’

insomniac ducks in to say...

Posted November 16
DB Paper was ok but that was highly dependent on the platform. Desktop/laptop were fine, the iPhone was also ok but so tiny I was crosseyed afterwards, and the Android tablet failed to provide me with a cursor on many occasions which made editing simple things difficult.
With the tablet I had a select all moment where I was not entirely sure what to do next just in case I deleted everything. I know you keep the original safely tucked away somewhere but do you occasionally backup the beta copy?
I'm happy to use either Paper or Docs.

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WarDog reckons...

Posted November 16
I found the latency on DropBox, both via Desktop and Android tablet to be extremely frustrating. To the point that I almost didn't read through the final third.

I like the anthology delivery for Stalin's Hammer.

And I also find switching tasks every couple of months a much more relaxing way of working. I fond it gives me fresh perspectives on prior projects too.

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jl would have you know...

Posted November 16
What's the premise for "The Cruel Stars"? Sounds interesting.

Loved dropbox, I used it on my Mac and had no problems. Very intuitive and fun to work with. Considering using it myself for my next book, great way to get real-time feedback from your betas. I really enjoyed it.

Also, good concept releasing the novellas as an anthology, especially like the print-on-demand part. Electronic books are fine, but every now and then I do love a paperback.

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Surtac is gonna tell you...

Posted November 16
Yeah, what the sleepless one said.

With no prior experience of the product, I worked out how to use DB Paper relatively easily but its performance was highly dependent on the platform. Safari on iOS on iPad was unusable due to app latency times; Firefox or Chrome on a Windows 7 laptop was nearly as bad; the only decent response I could get was on Chrome on a Win 10 desktop. And I was using the same network infrastructure for all of these - VDSL2 broadband router hardwired to the two Win machines and wifi to the iPad.

Anyway, I was happy to be part of the process, and would do so again.

John Birmingham ducks in to say...

Posted November 16
Yeah, it does seem very dependent on platform, with mobile devices being the worst.

AuntyLou asserts...

Posted November 20
Yep Android tablet was hard work. One thing that no one else seems to mention is that Google Docs allowed a much smoother experience for glancing through comments. I like seeing the thought processes of others...even if it is only to kick myself for missing typos.

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Don Bagert mutters...

Posted November 16
It's hard to complain about 3.1 being delayed when you're saying it should be finished by six months from now, and also be available to everyone at the same time! I remember that one book that was delayed so long in the U.S. (maybe Final Impact?)

An anthology of 3 novellas that just happen to all be in the same universe with a continuing story line. Sound good if the Paris publishers buy it. (This made me think of when this "anthology" of 8 previously published short-stories plus one new story was released a some time back. You may have heard of it - the Foundation Trilogy.) LOL

The DB Paper could be a little fickle in some places, but overall it was very useful. A Girl in Time was my first time with the betas, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I can't believe you think we'll be overloaded by this - we're getting to see John Birmingham working at his craft! Also, I don't know how your publishing editors have been but I've seen many books by others where it was obvious the editors didn't understand what was going on. Do you want the betas, after the book is released, to be telling you "Look at these continuity errors, JB! WE would have found all of them!" LOL

Finally, I'd also like to know a bit of what Cruel Stars is about :)

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Lulu puts forth...

Posted November 16
"Come January I'll release all of the Stalin's Hammer books in one volume"

Literally a volume, like on paper?

John Birmingham mutters...

Posted November 16
Yes.

Lulu swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted November 16
Excellent!

dweeze puts forth...

Posted November 16
Come January I'd be purchasing such a volume then.
Yay.

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DarrenBloomfield puts forth...

Posted November 16
1. DB Paper is worth sticking with - even though I'm one that used my ipad almost exclusively, and as above, yeah it's not without its frustrations.

2. We betas get at least as much in return for what we give. So I selfishly say go for it. But will understand if you don't (your publisher may also have a risk-averse view).

3. Lots on JB - well done. Is it safe to say in 29 days you will be rich?

John Birmingham puts forth...

Posted November 16
I wouldn't go that far.

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insomniac mumbles...

Posted November 16
I think there will always be enough alphas available at any one time to cope with any potential overloading. I feel like it's ok to dip in or out depending on our individual workloads, or is that just lazy slave talk?

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Dave C puts forth...

Posted November 16
Dropbox was good. There were a few fuggly moments using it on my android, as stated above, but generally it was excellent.
If you're asking whether to beta The Cruel Stars, I'd describe it like this; everyone's got their favorite bands, right? And their albums are the mint, polished, end-product. But come on, who wouldn't want to hang in their studio while they're laying the tracks?

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Murphy_of_Missouri ducks in to say...

Posted November 16
Not a fan of the Dropbox Paper. I found it pretty maddening to work with.

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Jeats has opinions thus...

Posted November 16
Just out of interest you mentioned the rights to the audiobook... have you ever had interest for a movie? The time does seem ripe for a "Final Countdown" style movie - you know to make 'merica great again!

I am really looking forward to reading "The Cruel Stars" when it is released.

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DarrenBloomfield mumbles...

Posted November 16
A girl in time is perfect for a netflix production. And the Dave for that matter (SFX budget might be a bit high!)

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Alastair reckons...

Posted November 17
What about a burger meetup in NYC? I'm in!

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Turlogh Dubh O'Brien would have you know...

Posted November 17
Dropbox Paper took me a second to get used to, but overall it was good. As others said, it wasn't without its shortcomings, but it did the trick.

As far as doing beta for "The Cruel Stars," I would do it in a heartbeat. But it's totally up to you (and the publishers).

The anthology sounds good too, and I am sure all of us are looking forward to WW3.1.

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Rhino mutters...

Posted November 17
DP was rough on IPad Pro. One thing that I didn't like (or figure out) was how to bookmark my progress so that I didn't have to do that entire scroll from the top thing every time. Probably a PIFOK error.

I'm always up for a beta ... mainly because I can lord it over the untermenschen.

John Birmingham mumbles...

Posted November 17
We do not mention the untermenschen

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Ceramic has opinions thus...

Posted November 17
Never mind, just emailing you now.

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Rhino is gonna tell you...

Posted November 18
But. But. But ... the sounds they make when taunted are like music for the soul.

But, my Master has spoken ... no more more mentions of the U-word.

Sudragon ducks in to say...

Posted November 18
They have become...

Untermentionables.

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Oldy asserts...

Posted December 1
If you're worried about overloading the betas, you can always increase the pool...

...just sayin'

John Birmingham is gonna tell you...

Posted December 1
Old, if you want in, just let me know via the mailing list email.

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Alphas, your beta is good to go

Posted November 9 into Writing by John Birmingham

Just loaded ACT 3.

I'm writing the epilogue today, and maybe tomorrow, but there's a complete story arc ready to go now.

Enjoy.

You can search the document for ACT 3 or for Chapter 26 to take you to the start.

7 Responses to ‘Alphas, your beta is good to go’

Surtac reckons...

Posted November 9
Sir! Yes sir!

Will get to it this evening after work.

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insomniac has opinions thus...

Posted November 9
Do we have a time limit?

John Birmingham would have you know...

Posted November 9
Early next week it goes to the production edit.

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Yank across the sea is gonna tell you...

Posted November 9
Are you going to make any adjustments to AoT if Trump gets elected since in the novels Clinton was president in their future timeline?

John Birmingham is gonna tell you...

Posted November 9
Well, it is an alternate history.

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Dave C would have you know...

Posted November 9
Clinton hadn't quite been confirmed in the book though, had she? It was just assumed that Clinton would win. Sound familiar? Kinda liked it better as fiction.

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DaveC puts forth...

Posted November 9
AoT... D'Oh! Lost in the quantum foam.

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The end is nigh

Posted November 3 into Writing by John Birmingham

I'm about to delete a chapter that I spent most of yesterday writing. A chapter I was pretty pleased with too. It's unavoidable. Having intricately plotted out the final act of A Girl in Time, I was walking my dog this morning when I realised there was a simpler, more elegant way of bringing all of the story threads together. I hate that.
It's taken me an hour this morning, of muttering under my breath, stalking around the house, cursing myself, but I finally got to a point where I can do what needs to be done.
Delete the chapter, and rewrite it to set up the simpler, more elegant finale.
As much as it will hurt cutting out those 3000 words, it'll save me somewhere between eight and ten thousand words by the time I'm done. I originally planned for this book to top out at 90K. It was heading towards 100,000 as of yesterday.
Hopefully, this means I'll have Act 3 ready for beta late on Friday.

12 Responses to ‘The end is nigh’

Murphy_of_Missouri asserts...

Posted November 3
Save the material. Might be useful for recycle later.

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insomniac mutters...

Posted November 3
Serendipity is a wonderful thing

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Dave W mumbles...

Posted November 3
Could be a good deleted-scenes or alternative ending easter egg on the DVD extras.

Murphy_of_Missouri ducks in to say...

Posted November 3
There is a lot of that laying around, Dave.

Dave W ducks in to say...

Posted November 3
The Director's Cut, double dvd special edition?

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FormerlyKnownAsSimon has opinions thus...

Posted November 3
On a purely selfish note: Friday is perfect for me. Driving the fam up your way(ish) to Southport to see in laws for a couple of days. Never has there been better timing :)

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BostonJoe ducks in to say...

Posted November 3
I second the deleted scenes idea.

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w from brisbane reckons...

Posted November 3
Once again, the 'in the moment' zen of a canine brings clarity. Don't forget to mention your dog on the acknowledgements page.

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WarDog swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted November 3
I often have the same experience when coding.

A good step away from the project (or a night of sleep/alcohol) and the fresh perspective turns mountains into gold plated molehills.

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Rhino reckons...

Posted November 4
Elegant Ending = Introduction of The Rhino. I figured as much.

Can't wait to see this ... very curious as to where this is going.

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DarrenBloomfield puts forth...

Posted November 4
Put it up, put it up, PUT. IT. UUUUUUUUPPPPP!!!!

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Gutz mumbles...

Posted November 12
I just hope that walking your sometime disappearing dog has not given you pause on how you treat your disappearing characters. lest a large portion of the narrative given to never to be seen again instruments of assistance. Bruce from unit 38 ' i am sure he was here with my Fifi.!, wont our children be gorgeous!! ' all that superfluous rubbish can become cannon fodder Wendy!!

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