Cheeseburger Gothic

Life on the Line podcast

Posted August 8 by John Birmingham

I stumbled across this obscure treasure because Alex Lloyd, my former editor at Pan Mac, tweeted it out. As he should, it's his passion project. Alex and the rocksteady LoTL crew have been interviewing Australian veterans and packaging up the results as a podcast: Life on the Line.

The most recent ep, the one which drew me in, was a session with Trooper Mark Donaldson VC. I'd read his book, The Crossroad, a couple of years ago and it went straight to the shelf in my professional library.

The interview is fascinating, and hugely valuable if you're somebody like me who writes about military characters while having conspicuously avoided the inconvenience of military service.

There are seventy-eight interviews so far, with vets both male and female going back to WW2. There are episodes which delve into the Great War, but with no living particpants available, as far as I know, these often involve historians and family members.

It's a great collection, avaiable on iTunes.

Or you can check out the website here.

3 Responses to ‘Life on the Line podcast’

jl mumbles...

Posted August 8
Read Donaldson's story on Wikipedia. It's not every day that a fellow gets the VC. Bad situation.

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she_jedi puts forth...

Posted August 9
I think Richard Fidler interviewed him on Conversations. It was incredible, he was so matter of fact about the utterly horrific things he went through that earned him the VC. Amazing man.

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jl is gonna tell you...

Posted August 12
I looked it up. The very last confirmed WW1 veteran from any country was Florence Green, from the UK. She died at the age of 110 years in 2012. When I was a kid, the Great War veterans were very old. Now they're gone. Kind of like the Civil War veterans when my Grandma was a girl.

The generations come and go, and there is no end to wars. A pity.

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Thanks to everyone who left reviews

Posted August 7 by John Birmingham

We didnt seem to have the usual problem with the Beast just bulk deleting the first twenty or thirty reviews that dropped on THE GOLDEN MINUTE. But a few peeps had had their reviews denied because... well, I dunno.

The way of the Beast is mysterious.

But all the reviews help. Each one is worth about a hundred sales they reckon. So I'm always grateful to get them. If you've left your's already, this is where I dips me lid.

If you haven't...

8 Responses to ‘Thanks to everyone who left reviews’

Vovchara reckons...

Posted August 7
Sorry, couldn't write a longer review, because... well nothing to bitch about and I am only good at bitching and not so good at a Praise.

https://www.amazon.de/Golden-Minute-Girl-Novel-English-ebook/dp/B07FZJTZX7/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1533628601&sr=8-1&keywords=a+golden+minute

John Birmingham mumbles...

Posted August 8
Cheers guv. So weird to see the book on the German site.

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Rob would have you know...

Posted August 8
I was denied being able to write a review because I haven't bought enough on amazon Australia and my American account isn't recognised the same way as it was before the beast of Bezos set up shop in this wide brown land.


The spirit was will willing, but the amazon flesh was on the tilt.

John Birmingham would have you know...

Posted August 8
*Shakes fist*

BEEEEZOS!!

insomniac is gonna tell you...

Posted August 9
Not sure if this is a thing but have you tried "purchasing" a bunch of books with a zero price on Kindle just to get your personal numbers up?

John Birmingham is gonna tell you...

Posted August 9
The Beast would figure that out pretty quickly.

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she_jedi ducks in to say...

Posted August 8
I had a 'Wait, WHAT??' moment when I went searching for the review that the Beast had assured me they'd posted but I couldn't find. But all was good, I just needed to scroll down to the bottom of the list of reviews since mine was an unverified purchase as I'd petitioned Tim Cook for a copy of the Minute instead. Panic over, review confirmed as live. Phew!

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Bondiboy66 ducks in to say...

Posted August 9
I think my little thumbs up got posted - I piggybacked on an earlier review...

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Finally!

Posted July 31 into Books by John Birmingham

Golden Minute has finally dropped on iBooks. Not sure what the issue was, but having given the Fruit Company exclusive pre-order status, I found myself yesterday staring at a content management panel which said the book was available in 51 countries, when it wasn't showing up anywhere.

Frustrating much?

Anyway, it's up now, and it turns out to have been a bit of a gift because it made me rethink my normal launch sequence. The book hit a bunch of best seller lists without any publicity, and now I have my artillery lined up and pre-sighted to begin a marketing bombardment.

Huzzah!

Thanks to eveyne who's bought in so far.

I look forward to your verified reviews.

THE GOLDEN MINUTE

7 Responses to ‘Finally!’

she_jedi ducks in to say...

Posted July 31
Yay! And congratulations on finally setting the Minute free :)

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Bondiboy66 has opinions thus...

Posted July 31
I second that! Now then, about that third story.....

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Therbs is gonna tell you...

Posted July 31
Review on its way

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she_jedi would have you know...

Posted July 31
I also just wanted to add that the cover art for the Minute is just brilliant, whatever you're paying your artist it's not enough.

John Birmingham is gonna tell you...

Posted July 31
Quiet you.

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Rob ducks in to say...

Posted August 1
Only got through the first chapter so far, but I get the feeling you might have planned some camping with your kids and made a dream list of cool stuff you might like to purchase. And then you actually had to go camping and your good lady wife said nah we aren't taking all that.

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Sweet Jane Says swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted August 4
You're a very busy person but you're staying on top of your game. The publicity and promotion rounds now begin. It will go smoothly with your experience. Enjoy the SciFi cons!

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The Golden Minute: Launch Day

Posted July 30 into Books by John Birmingham

Used to be that launch day meant a piss up. A publisher shipped thousands of copies of your baby off to hundreds of bookshops. You chose one to 'host' the launch, you invited all your friends, and your publisher spent many thousands of dollars more on grog and finger food than they could ever hope to recoup in sales at the event.

These days not even publishers do that. We all just work the algorithm.

I'll be tickling the Beast of Bezos, and the big Fruit Company and all of the others over the next week or two. But I'll start here.

First up, I've dropped the price of A Girl in Time to 99 cents. If by some miracle you have not bought this awesome title, now's your chance to get it cheap and expunge your undying shame. The link above is for Amazon. But you can get it pretty much everywhere via this universal url.

The new hotness is of course The Golden Minute. I'll write about the book itself tomorrow but you can get it by clicking here. It's half price for readers of the Burger and bookclub members for the next couple of days.

29 Responses to ‘The Golden Minute: Launch Day’

Nocturnalist swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted July 30
Not using Bookfunnel any more? Or did they change their name?

John Birmingham asserts...

Posted July 30
Bookfunnel is for private freebies.

John Birmingham swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted July 30
But you do remind me I have to drop a couple of copies in there.

Nocturnalist has opinions thus...

Posted July 30
Ah, useful to know. Thanks!

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she_jedi mutters...

Posted July 30
Not to sound alamist, but The Golden Minute appears to be missing from iBooks and TIM COOK HAS NOT GIVEN ME MY PRE-ORDER YET WTF JB? I'll try not to panic, I'm sure you have this in hand :)

John Birmingham has opinions thus...

Posted July 30
I have been on this all day, Ms Jedi. It's holding up the entire roll out.

she_jedi reckons...

Posted July 30
Oh thank goodness. I will wait patiently for you to come to my rescue. I've already re-read A Girl in Time in preparation, so will have to read my current book more slowly so I don't run out of reading material before the Minute drops. #Fangirlproblems.

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Therbs is gonna tell you...

Posted July 30
I'll be doing a phantom launch of Da Minute a bit later today. This will involve Titanic Thunder Lager and Cady Atomic Ale. Might even sign a few Chumley beer mats.

jason is gonna tell you...

Posted July 31
Please provide launch details and I will be there. Anything for a free beer and a signed beer mat.

Therbs reckons...

Posted July 31
By the time beers were done the coasters were too wet to take ink.
But the beer was good.

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foreverwar puts forth...

Posted July 31
I pre-ordered when you put the link up on FB, but it's still not available on iBooks UK.

Ah well, I'll just re-read A Girl In Time while I'm waiting.

Keep up the good work, John.

foreverwar has opinions thus...

Posted July 31
Just checked, and the Kindle version is available on Amazon UK.

John Birmingham is gonna tell you...

Posted July 31
There's definitely something wrong with iBooks. I'm gonna try get it sorted today, but if you want your copy immediately get your email addy to me and I'll send a link for a free copy via bookfunnel.

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she_jedi ducks in to say...

Posted July 31
So tempting, but i’ll wait so I can give you money for it. Fingers crossed it’s fixed today, good luck John!

John Birmingham asserts...

Posted July 31
It appears to be available.

she_jedi asserts...

Posted July 31
YAAAS!!! Success! Please take my $4.99 with thanks :)

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Robertkocsis ducks in to say...

Posted July 31
yay!
back from UK so keen to read. Link took me straight to amazon ( a saved preference?) . Is the price listed already the 1/2 price Burger reader amount($3.99) or do we have to do somethig to prove we devour your output?

John Birmingham mutters...

Posted July 31
That's the half price. It'll go up to eight bucks eventually. I'm not publicising it widely. Just here and too my various mailing lists. Once they've had a bite, I'll crank up the ask.

Robertkocsis has opinions thus...

Posted July 31
Thanks, downloaded and all set once I finish The Outsider, looks good

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Brother PorkChop mumbles...

Posted July 31
Made the purchase but sad panda cos its via the Beast. I guess some reviews would be warranted and required as well Mr B?

jl reckons...

Posted July 31
Brother, you'd be amazed how hard it is to come by Amazon reviews. I put my two cents out on my website.

John Birmingham mutters...

Posted July 31
Reviews anywhere would be muchas welcome. But they have a particular power on Amazon.

jl reckons...

Posted July 31
Posted mine. We'll see if it sticks.

John Birmingham ducks in to say...

Posted July 31
Thanks. It should. It's a verified purchase.

she_jedi swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted July 31
Review posted on Amazon, but it's not up yet, I think they scrutinise it first :)

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KreepyKrawly would have you know...

Posted July 31
I just bought it from kobo. About bloody time too, been hanging for the next JB book. I'll put a review later tonight (Gotta work now...)

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sibeen asserts...

Posted July 31
OK, I've ordered the damn thing. What now?

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Rob has opinions thus...

Posted August 1
its worth way more than 3.99 . Hopefully with the direct supply chain system you have set up, you will see most of it for the down payment on that gold plated rocket car, or at the very least some steamed hams.

John Birmingham mumbles...

Posted August 1
The price creeps up as the week goes on.

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The Golden Minute pre-order

Posted July 27 by John Birmingham

Just pulled the trigger on the pre-order for THE GOLDEN MINUTE. It's available at iTunes exclusively. Not because I'm a hopeless Apple fanboi. But because I'm a ruthless dealmaker.

There is a discount this weekend. (Although there'll be discounts for book club members on other sites, obvs).

But if you read on iOS. Cady is waiting.

7 Responses to ‘The Golden Minute pre-order’

she_jedi has opinions thus...

Posted July 27
Tim Cook has taken a pre-order of my money. Now I have to wait three whole days to see Cady and Smith again. The outrage!

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Vovchara has opinions thus...

Posted July 27
patiently waiting for Amazon here :P

jl mumbles...

Posted July 30
Amazon is live in both the US and Australia.

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Dirk reckons...

Posted July 30
It's alive!
NL Bol.com: https://www.bol.com/nl/p/the-golden-minute/9200000096719595/

JB can send ya the link to the book peddlers in your region.

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Therbs reckons...

Posted July 30
Just got it on Kindle (Oz). Which means happy hour beers with Cady and Titanic after work.

John Birmingham puts forth...

Posted July 30
NEW FAVOURITE!

Therbs mumbles...

Posted July 30
I didn't wait. Knocked over the prologue and a bit more at lunch while chomping on bourbon chicken.

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"No puppet. No Puppet. You're the puppet!"

Posted July 18 into Politics by John Birmingham

I haven't yet read the indictments that Mueller filed against those 12 Russian military intelligence officers, but I was surprised at just how much detail is revealed by the filings.

This piece over at Politico, is kind of eye-opening:

An advanced investigation of an advanced hacking operation requires significantly more than just access to servers. Investigators want access to the attack infrastructure—the equivalent to a chain of getaway cars of a team of burglars. And the latest indictments are rich with details that likely come from intercepting command-and-control boxes (in effect, bugging those getaway cars) and have nothing to do with physical access to the DNC’s servers.

The FBI and Robert Mueller’s investigators discovered when and how specific Russian military officers logged into a control panel on a leased machine in Arizona. They found that the GRU officers secretly surveiled an empoyee of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee all day in real time, including spying on “her individual banking information and other personal topics.” They showed that “Guccifer 2.0,” the supposed lone hacker behind the DNC hack, was in fact managed by a specific GRU unit, and even reconstructed the internet searches made within that unit while a GRU officer with shoddy English skills was drafting the first post as Guccifer 2.0. None of this information could have possibly come from any DNC server.

With help from the broader intelligence community, the FBI was able to piece all these details together into the bigger picture of the GRU’s vast hacking effort. The complexity of high-tempo, high-volume hacking campaigns means that attackers can make myriad mistakes; Mueller’s latest indictments reveal just how successful American investigators have been at exploiting those repeated errors and uncovering more and more information about what Russia did.

It also puts into perspective the real tragedy of what happened at the Trump-Putin Summit. The US intelligence commuity handed Trump a loaded gun to point at the Putin. And instead the tangerine traitor stuck it into his own mouth and pulled the trigger.

Seriously, go read it.

6 Responses to ‘"No puppet. No Puppet. You're the puppet!"’

jl would have you know...

Posted July 18
Worst. Press. Conference. Ever.

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insomniac asserts...

Posted July 18
But he misspoke, bigly, one line. That makes it all ok, doesn't it? As long as you forget everything else he said.
Not sure if Havoc will be along so here's a FKN Muppet for the Donald.

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Therbs reckons...

Posted July 20
Supposedly there is accountability in the position of POTUS. But will it ever be enforced while Trump stomps it around, drags his arse on it then buries it in the Rose Garden next to the detritus from last night's KFC MegaBucket?

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Barnesm puts forth...

Posted July 22
Wow, just wow.

Ceramic swirls their brandy and claims...

Posted July 23
That is my responce. Wow. Scary.

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w from brisbane puts forth...

Posted July 22
Though Trump is widely derided, it is odd to see Trump's large impact locally.
I think the Liberal Party has been enboldened by Trump's success. eg. big tax cuts for rich people.
And everybody, left and right, is using the term 'fake news' to describe often fairly well-sourced MSM stories that they don't like or have some deniability about. Whereas the term was originally coined to describe entirely sus non-MSM websites pumping out totally concocted stories like "Pope Francis Shocks World, Endorses Donald Trump for President" and "FBI Agent Suspected in Hillary Email Leaks Found Dead in Apparent Murder-Suicide".

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