MERGE Blog Tour: Guest Post by MCM! (You can win!)

May 30, 2012 by

Hello out there! Today I’m super excited to be a part of the MERGE Blog Tour! See my sidebar over there? I even added a banner (and if you’ve been here before you know that I almost never update my sidebar!). MERGE is a 13 part paranormal thriller series put out by the folks over at 1889 labs. And by ’13 part’, I mean 13 stories – not 13 different books, and they are all stand alone!

Set in a world still reeling from the discovery of transhumans, MERGE charts the loves, the betrayals, and the struggle for survival as transhumans are rounded up and sent to live in ghettos. Tensions are high, riots are brewing. The human race is about to come undone.

The stories written by 4 different authors, AM Harte (you might remember A.M. Harte from my review of Hungry for You), Kit Iwasaki, MCM, and Yvonne Reid. The blog tour will last 4 weeks. Every week, four stories will be published.

For my part of the tour I’ll be featuring a guest post by MCM, whose short story, Everything Must Go (Teaser: The first sentence is a doozie! (I’ve always wanted to say that!)), is being released this week as part of the series.


How To Accidentally Create A Series
by MCM

I’ll tell you a secret: I wanted to write a silly scene about a bureaucrat in a vat of ooze, and it somehow turned into a four-author series with intricate plotting.

What went wrong? Atmosphere, that’s what.

This was my thought process: Bureaucrat, vat of ooze, silly. Easy enough, but why would a bureaucrat be in a vat of ooze in the first place? Backstory is required, or at least set-up! There’s got to be more to the story… a novel, perhaps!

And that’s when the smarter half of my brain smacked the other half in the proverbial face, because as everyone knows, one does not write novels about bureaucrats or ooze, because novels are not meant to be boring. Unless you’re trying to win an award.

“Fine, then,” I said to myself, “I will make it a short story. Everyone loves short stories.”

But try as I might, I was unable to think of a good wrapper for the notion of a bureaucrat in ooze. At least not one that fit into a small package. The mechanics of ooze generally lend themselves to epic storytelling, and while one can sometimes squeeze epic-ness into 3,000 words, it’s usually not the best idea. And so I did what all good writers do in time of need… I wrote to Kit Iwasaki to see if I could trick her into giving me the answer.

I gave Kit the scoop on my story: “All I can tell you is that it’s about a bureaucrat, and he’s in a vat of ooze. I’m sure you can fill in the blanks, right? ;)”

Her answer was not what I was expecting. Instead of telling me how to fix my story, she came up with this idea about a society in the throes of genetic transformation, about the ways the transformation changes the way we interact with each other, the way we govern ourselves, the way—

“Yes, yes, yes,” said I. “But about the ooze…”

But sadly Kit, who was working towards a deadline six months passed, was too far gone to be reached again. She was excited to be collaborating, and couldn’t wait to explore the world further. Evidently, I needed to fix this new problem before my ooze went dry.

My next thought was to contact Yvonne Reid, who is writing a cool new series called Ascension for us this summer. I briefly outlined my bit to her, along with the important fragments of Kit’s blah-blah-blah scenario, and ended with: “… but I’m really concerned
about the way Kit is treating the bridge between this genetic transformation and the vat of ooze…”

Yvonne sprang into action, crafting a though-provoking outline about a bounty hunter charged with tracking down the genetic aberrations — transhumans — and bringing them to a government-sanctioned ghetto. Things are complicated by the appearance of—

“Back up, we’re focusing on the bureaucrats,” I said, but she wasn’t listening anymore. In her mind, this was now an epic novel with three authors, all intertwined and quite frankly, involving far less ooze than I was hoping for. Something had to be done.

I wrote an email to AM Harte, the Editor-in-Chief of 1889 Labs, and I did what any self-respecting publisher would do…

“Kit and Yvonne have this crazy idea to write a novel with a bunch of authors about transhumans and how genetic changes impact society and crap like that. I need your help.”

“I see the problem,” she said.

“I know, right?”

“It should be a series, not a novel.”

“Hold on…”

And before I knew it, we had this big project planned, tying together all this stuff, with absolutely no regard for bureaucrats or ooze or vats or anything. I was depressed beyond words, even if the component parts of the series are actually kinda cool.

In the end, I wrote my story, “Everything Must Go”, about a bureaucrat sent in to stop people with silly ideas from ruining a perfectly good time. And the ooze, it flows.

Mission accomplished.

AUTHOR BIO

MCM is the creator of the animated series RollBots. He also writes books, such as The
Vector, The Pig and the Box, and Typhoon. When not doing such things, he is coding sites
like this one. He is also insane. For more information, visit http://1889.ca/mcm.


 

(1) One lucky reader will win an iPad.
(2) Second place will win e-copies of all 13 stories, plus a $10 iTunes or Amazon voucher.
(3) Third place will receive a $10 iTunes/Amazon voucher, plus e-copies of one of the 4 authors’ MERGE stories (their choice).

Here’s how you can win:

- any comments (on any blog tour post) will counts as an entry to the grand prize (including an iPad!)
- tweets with #merge1889 count as entries too
- Facebook Merge mentions tagging 1889 Labs fb page count
- and subscribing to our newsletter on http://1889.ca/merge is worth FIVE entries

Winners will be announced at the end of the tour (straight after June 18).

PS. Didn’t you just love my gratuitous overuse of parenthesis. Yes, I talk like that in real life!

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Win Wonder or Insurgent (Preorder)!

Feb 6, 2012 by

Welcome to the Follower Love Giveaway Hop.  The hop is hosted by I Am A Reader, Not A Writer and is co-hosted by author Rachael Renee Anderson.

For this giveaway I am giving away your choice of two books! One of them I read as an ARC, and LOVED! The other one I have not had the chance to read yet, but I suspect it will be pretty popular! If you win, you get to pick. 

I read Wonder by RJ Palacio a few months ago and I LOVED it. See it over there in my sidebar? Yep, I can’t wait. It’s middle grade, not YA, but I don’t care. It quickly made it to my list of favorites (Bonus: It’s not a series!!). You can read my review of it here. Wonder doesn’t come out until February 14, but you’ll be in the clear since the contest ends on the 14th.

Wonder synopsis: I won’t describe what I look like. Whatever you’re thinking, it’s probably worse.

August (Auggie) Pullman was born with a facial deformity that prevented him from going to a mainstream school—until now. He’s about to start 5th grade at Beecher Prep, and if you’ve ever been the new kid then you know how hard that can be. The thing is Auggie’s just an ordinary kid, with an extraordinary face. But can he convince his new classmates that he’s just like them, despite appearances?

-or-

Insurgent by Veronica Roth does not come out until May 2012. I DO NOT have a copy. If you win this book, you will win a preorder of it. You should get the book the day it is released. If you are familiar with me on Goodreads (add me as friend!), you know that I read the first book and pretty much didn’t like it. I DID enjoy reading it, and writing the review – which I think is pretty funny. In fact, it’s my most popular review on Goodreads. Don’t know how that happened! You can check it out here. This is book two in a series.

Insurgent synopsis: One choice can transform you—or it can destroy you. But every choice has consequences, and as unrest surges in the factions all around her, Tris Prior must continue trying to save those she loves—and herself—while grappling with haunting questions of grief and forgiveness, identity and loyalty, politics and love.

Tris’s initiation day should have been marked by celebration and victory with her chosen faction; instead, the day ended with unspeakable horrors. War now looms as conflict between the factions and their ideologies grows. And in times of war, sides must be chosen, secrets will emerge, and choices will become even more irrevocable—and even more powerful. Transformed by her own decisions but also by haunting grief and guilt, radical new discoveries, and shifting relationships, Tris must fully embrace her Divergence, even if she does not know what she may lose by doing so.


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Well Hello There!

Feb 1, 2012 by

Hi! Hey there! How are you? How’ve you been? Oh, you look SO nice today! Have you done something with your hair? It just looks so full and shiny today. I swear there is not a flyaway to be found! And your outfit just suits you so well! I don’t know how you do it, but you always just do! Go you!

Whew, now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, I’ve decided to tell you what’s been going on around here at Attack of the Book! If you’re one of those folks that enjoy reading the long story, here ya go: Well, it started back in the end of 2011. I had just blah blah blah blah blah blah. And then blah blah blah etc. Blah blah busy, blah blah so swamped. Blah blah blah blah blah blah holidays! Blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah crazy weather… You get the point, don’t you?

If you’re one of those folks that prefer to get the short answer, here ya go: I was lazy! I don’t think you could possibly understand how easy it is to NOT post anything! It is incredibly easy. It’s sooo easy to just NOT write a review for a book once you’ve finished it. Seriously, I still have about 30-40 reviews to clean up or finish. I don’t know if I’ll ever get around to it. It was insanely easy to do it that way.

Because I have problems of the mental sort, I have to decide not to take the easy way, and not to be so lazy. I shall post on this site, starting today! I think I’m doing pretty well so far. Let’s see how February goes, why don’t we? My plans are to clean up the site, join a few challenges, update my pages, you know, the usual stuff. Wish me luck that I can be consistent. I think challenges will help that, don’t you?

Tomorrow I will begin posting reviews again. It’ll be like I never even stopped blogging. You’ll see…!

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Indie Book Blowout Sale!!!

Sep 2, 2011 by

This Labor Day weekend is an ebook lover’s dream come true! Over 100 authors, over 130 titles, all priced to 99 cents as part of a Labor Day weekend sale to remember. It is the first annual Indie Book Blowout!

We are talking award-winners! Best sellers! All genres! New releases! All priced down to 99 cents PLUS, if you sign up for the newsletter, you’ll be entered to win a brand new KINDLE and $100 in gift card giveaways.

Just head to http://IndieBookBlowout.com, shop, click, buy and enjoy! Happy weekend and happy reading!!

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What Are Your Top 5 Books Read in July 2011?

Aug 1, 2011 by

July was kind of a slow, maybe average month for me. I read (or listened to) 16.5 books. Not bad, but at this rate it means that I have no chance of reaching my goal of 200 books read for the year. Actually, I knew going in that I wouldn’t reach that goal. But there’s nothing wrong with aiming high, reaching for the stars, being all I can be, putting my best foot… erm, you get the point. Really, those are all lies. I’ve been reading like a teenager - I read when I feel like it! Maybe not so much a teenager, but more of an elderly person or baby, since I tend to fall asleep more often than not! And then I read when I feel like it!

Most of these surprised me more than anything. None of the books listed were ones that I predicted I would like.

    

Two of the books, The Private Thoughts of Amelia E. Rye and Skulduggery Pleasent: Playing with Fire, are more middle grade books. I enjoyed Amelia E. Rye because it was funny and sad at times. Amelia is funny with the way she writes in her diary journal. It’s about family and friendship. I listened to Playing with Fire on my Sansa, and it was so funny! It’s about a young girl who has to save the world. Earlier I called it funny, I take that back, it’s hilarious. The narrator did a great job with the voices. It kept making me smile, but no one around me knew what I was smiling at, so I just looked weird. It was worth it though! Both books are better for middle school/older elementary to *cough* adult.

The rest of the books are more general adult. My first Regency Romance since before I started Goodreads, and boy was Devil in Winter worth it! I loved it way more than I thought I would. Seriously, one of the best bad boy/wallflower books out there. Don’t let the regency/historical label turn you away, any romance lover will love it! Ward Against Death was a ton of fun! Reminded me of a Harry Dresden meets Stephanie Plum meets awesome. Ward was funny, the poor guy just couldn’t catch a break. You gotta love it when the main character doesn’t realize just how good he is. I need to know what will happen and I can’t wait for the sequel! Lastly, I am listening to/reading The Name of the Wind. I don’t think I like fantasies, but dang it Kvothe is too hardcore to pass up. He’s practically written as the Chuck Norris of his time. I was almost waiting for them to say Kvothe is so awesome he created fire by rubbing two ice cubes together or that ghosts sit around the campfire and tell Kvothe stories (No, I’m not clever enough to come up with that on my own!). That’s just how Kvothe rolls.

What about you? What were your top five books read last month? If you haven’t read that many, just list what you can!

**Stay tuned, later in the week I’ll be posting my least favorite books of July**

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