Don’t Forget Me!

Don’t forget to change your bookmarks, RSS feeds, or email subscriptions over to the new site! You’ll have to retype in the URL cbryanbrown.net to get there. All the new information is being posted up there instead of here and I’d hate for any one to miss an update!

See you over there!

Site moved…

Hey all, the new site will be over http://www.cbryanbrown.net.

If you want to keep following me (and yer not my mom, who has already moved her bookmark) please go there and click the RSS, Facebook, Twitter, or Goodreads buttons on the right.

Chris

2013: The Parting Glass

Now that 2013 is officially in the rearview, I’m not as hung over as I expected to be, but I’ve long known I’m a social drinker and when the party is small, so are my drinks. The party last night was just that—small—and in a way, quite reflective of the year I’ve had.

I don’t know if that’s necessarily a bad thing.

At any rate, I know a lot of my fellow writers are doing a “this is what I did with my writing” or a “this is what I’m going to do with my writing” post for the New Year and this is kind of like that, sort of, in a weird way.

What do you mean by weird, Chris?

Well, in 2013 I didn’t do shit all in regards to my writing. Oh, I wrote things; I just didn’t publish them. I went to some conventions and sold a few copies of my first novel, Necromancer, and met some cool folks out on the road. The awesome Nelson W. Pyles podcasted a few of my short and flash fiction pieces on The Wicked Library, but that was the extent of where my writing went the last 12 months.

Halfway through the year I freaked out about this. Of course, by the time June/July came around, I’d only subbed one piece (which ended up shortlisted and ultimately rejected). After the PMPress Writer’s Retreat at the end of July, I subbed two more pieces, and then another near the end of August. All three were (obviously) rejected by the respective editors. Looking back now, at the start of the new year, I’m more like fuck it. It is what it is. I did write, I just didn’t publish, and it’s about the former, not the latter.

One thing that I did do was get back into reading novels. Before some of you have a conniption over a writer “not reading,” let me explain: for the past several years, I’d read almost exclusively short fiction as the editor for Title Goes Here: and it was awesome; I was able to read and publish writers like Alison Littlewood, Paul Anderson, and Alexis A. Hunter. But it didn’t leave much time for novel reading. Sure, I’d squeeze in a couple here and there (and those were familiar books I’d read before), but not like I used to read. This year, I’m happy to say I put to rest 32 books over the last 12 months. The only book I attempted to read and didn’t finish was The Talisman by King and Straub. Sad to say this is like my third time trying, though I did make it further than any other attempt.

I will finish that book this year.

But, here’s the list of books I did read. You know, for the curious.

01)  Back Roads & Frontal Lobes by Brady Allen – 5/5
02)  They Thirst by Robert McCammon – 5/5
03)  Lucky Man by Michael J Fox – 3/5
04)  Phantoms by Dean Koontz – 4/5
05)  The Talisman by Stephen King & Peter Straub –
06)  Throttle by Stephen King & Joe Hill – 3/5
07)  Quarantined by Joe McKinney – 3/5
08)  The Hunt by Joseph Williams – 4/5
09)  The Rising by Brian Keene – 2/5
10)  Coraline by Neil Gaiman – 3/5
11)  Heart-Shaped Box by Joe Hill – 4/5
12)  Pavlov’s Dogs by D.L. Snell & Thom Brannan – 3/5
13)  Red: My Uncensored Life in Rock by Sammy Hagar – 3/5
14)  (dis)Comfort Food by Brad Carter – 5/5
15)  Let the Right One In by John Ajvide Lindqvist – 4/5
16)  Demons, Dolls, and Milkshakes by Nelson W. Pyles – 5/5
17)  A Trail in Blood by J. David Anderson – 5/5
18)  Losing Touch by Christian A. Larsen – 5/5
19)  Draculas by Crouch, Kilborn, Strand, Wilson – 3/5
20)  Frankenstein by Mary Shelley – 4/5
21)  War of the Worlds by HG Wells – 2/5
22)  Brave New World by Aldous Huxley – 4/5
23)  1984 by George Orwell – 4/5
24)  Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury – 4/5
25)  I, Robot by Isaac Asimov – 3/5
26)  Stranger in a Strange Land by Robert A. Heinlein – 3/5
27)  Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep by Philip K Dick – 3/5
28)  Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card – 4/5
29)  The Dispossessed by Ursula K. LeGuin – 3/5
30)  Children of Men by PD James – 3/5
31)  Wolf Hunt by Jeff Strand – 3/5
32)  The Hand of God by Tony Acree – 4/5
33)  The Wolf’s Moon by Patrick Jones – 2/5

I started building a reading list for this year a couple weeks ago, which includes several old King books I haven’t read in a decade or so, plus some other things I found on the bookshelves here I hadn’t read. I also received four Jonathan Maberry books for Christmas. They’re on the list, too. I can’t even speak to the number of books I have on my Kindle. I’ll read some of those, too.

I watched many movies in 2013. I can’t say I’m completely proud of this, but it’s a fact, and I do love movies. The number I watched is about double the number of books I read, but this list does include the few movies I saw at the theater and Netflix movies. Here’s that list, too, for the curious folk.

01)  Diary of a Nymphomaniac – 4/5
02)  Apartment 143 – 3/5
03)  Sector 7 – 3/5 (Korean, subtitled)
04)  Trollhunter – 4/5 (Norwegian, subtitled)
05)  The Tall Man – 3/5
06)  Dead Season – 2/5
07)  In the Spider’s Web – 1/5
08)  Good Neighbours – 3/5
09)  The Rig – 2/5
10)  The Lost Tribe – 1/5
11)  Airborne – 3/5
12)  The Innkeepers – 3/5
13)  The Devil Inside – 2/5
14)  Black Death – 3/5
15)  Cashback – 3/5
16)  Dungeons & Dragons: The Book of Vile Darkness – 2/5
17)  Intruders – 3/5
18)  Rango – 3/5
19)  The Day – 2/5
20)  Dead Snow -3/5 (Norwegian, subtitled)
21)  Chernobyl Diaries – 2/5
22)  The Thirst: Blood War – 2/5
23)  Red: Werewolf Hunter -2/5
24)  Cleopatra’s Second Husband – 2/5
25)  Pontypool – 4/5
26)  Total Recall (2012) – 3/5
27)  Jack the Giant Slayer – 3/5
28)  Evil Dead (2013) – 4/5
29)  Byzantium – 3/5
30)  The Lords of Salem – 3/5
31)  Battleship – 2/5
32)  Chronicle -2/5
33)  TMNT (2007, animated) – 3/5
34)  Behind the Candelabra – 4/5
35)  Extinction: The G.M.O. Chronicles – 2/5
36)  The Last Stand – 3/5
37)  Sanctum – 2/5
38)  Hanna – 2/5
39)  Cowboys vs. Aliens – 2/5
40)  Darkwolf – 1/5
41)  Wrath of the Titans – 2/5
42)  Trip to the Moon (1902) – 3/5
43)  The Great Train Robbery (1903) – 3/5
44)  World War Z – 3/5
45)  Frankenstein (1931) – 3/5
46)  The Public Enemy (1931) – 3/5
47)  This is the End – 3/5
48)  The Heat – 3/5
49)  Rear Window – 4/5
50)  His Girl Friday – 3/5
51)  Storage 24 – 2/5
52)  The Frankenstein Theory – 2/5
53)  Oklahoma! – 2/5
54)  Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1956) – 4/5
55)  Pacific Rim – 2/5
56)  The Wicker Tree – 2/5
57)  Spiders – 2/5
58)  The Conjuring – 3/5
59)  State of Emergency – 3/5
60)  Compliance – 4/5
61)  Shame – 4/5
62)  R.I.P.D. – 3/5
63)  Dredd – 3/5
64)  Infected – 2/5
65)  Stevie – 3/5
66)  Fatso (Norwegian, subtitled) – 4/5
67)  Battledogs – 2/5
68)  Apollo 18 – 3/5
69)  John Dies at the End – 4/5
70)  War of the Dead – 2/5
71)  War of the Worlds (1953) – 2/5
72)  The Sessions – 4/5
73)  Frankenstein (2005) – 3/5
74)  Mimic – 3/5
75)  Children of Men – 4/5
76)  Paranormal Activity 4 – 2/5
77)  The Possession – 2/5
78) War of the Worlds (2005) – 3/5

For the extra curious, you can read my post on how I derive my ratings here. If you don’t care, don’t click.

Overall, 2013 was a decent year for me and I’m happy in the growth I made as a writer. Personally, it was up and down. Probably the best part was finding out that grandfatherhood (BAM! just made up that word) here in a few months (March), while the worst part was fighting against depression and lethargy. I’m used to these spells just not for this long.

Funny truth…

On 12/31, before the drinking started, I did this Facebook “mental age test” and answered the questions honestly (c’mon, you know you fudge those fucking quiz answers to skew the results to whatever you think they should be) and my mental age was 16. Those of you who know me are aware I’m on the far side of 16 x 2. I don’t feel 16; I certainly don’t act 16 (though my wife may disagree with that). I believe it’s a sign I still hold a somewhat romantic and optimistic view of life and people, while masticating the shit sandwich I have every day for lunch.

Strangely, though, I’m okay with that.

Good night and joy be with you all.

Hello, 2014.

Opinion: Fun little viral list thing… thanks, Chris Larsen…

I got tagged. Yep, Chris Larsen got me, so here we go.

It’s a bit different from most others, and I like it, so I’m going to do it. It’s all about the ten books that stayed with you. Ten books? I have a few more than that, but I can easily give ten that shaped what I love to read and write.

Here they are, in no particular order, the ten books that have stayed with me over the years:

1)    The Tomb by F. Paul Wilson
2)    Watchers by Dean Koontz
3)    Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
4)    The Beasts of Valhalla by George C. Chesbro
5)    Alas, Babylon by Pat Frank
6)    I am Legend by Richard Matheson
7)    The Seduction of Peter S. by Lawrence Sanders
8)    They Thirst by Robert R. McCammon
9)    The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson
10) The Stand by Stephen King

The hardest one was the King novel. So much of his early work was crucial to me as a young(er) reader, and honestly, his short stories impacted me more than any of the novels. Uncle Stevie can write a bitchin’ fuckin’ short story, man.

Now it’s my turn to tag some peoples, so if someone has tagged you already, no need to do it again. If you haven’t been tagged, have fun!

Here we go… my man Nelson Pyles, Alexis A. Hunter, G. Elmer Munson, and the awesome Kenneth Cain.

News: Those changes…

Yeah, about those changes I mentioned a few weeks ago…

They are currently in full swing. If you’re reading this (HI MOM), you see it’s a redirect back to my old WordPress URL. It’s gonna be this way for a few weeks for a couple of reasons, such as NaNo and I’m a website/internet dumbass. It’ll take me a bit to figure shit out, but I’ve already started and I’m at least on my way.

And, with all that stuff, I won’t be updating here much as I’ll be busy, I have no pending publications, and overall, I’ve been slacking like a fat, lazy cat in the sun.   But, things will return to normal soon, I imagine. Either that or I’ll give up and go into politics.  Sounds fun.

 

News: A Changing of the Guard

This is kind of my two week notice that, at the end of the month, I’m swapping web servers and doing some crazy stupid shit that I’m totally dumb about. I do have some great people helping me with advice and smacks upside my head when needed, so hopefully there won’t be too big of an interruption.

(Sorry, mom, I know you come here to find out what I’m doing. I promise, I’ll call more instead.)

With that out of the way, I’m going to do NaNoWriMo again this year. Hopefully I win, unlike last year, when I only clocked about 32k or something (maybe even less).

I’ve heard a lot of writers (and non-writers, too) talk some serious shit about NaNo and how “Oh, you only write during November, so you’re A) not a real writer, B) not serious, C) stupid D) unprofessional, E) pretty much any insult out there…”

Well, no, douchebags, it’s none of the above for me. I do writing related tasks everyday, whether it’s reading, editing, or writing new words. But unlike some writers, I have a full time job, a college education to finish, two young kids, a wife I enjoy spending time with (doing things other than screwing, too), plus hobbies such as gaming, drinking beer, and what not. So what November provides for me is EXTRA TIME to write, because my wife allows (yes, I say allows, because if she didn’t allow it, it wouldn’t happen) me to basically say fuck all in regards to “family time” and I go out writing nearly every day. I’m restricted by the Thanksgiving dinner and my kids’ birthday parties. Those are must attend functions.

So, for all those naysayers, there are those of who use November as an enhancement to our already normal regimen of writing, so before you pop off at the mouth and talk some shit, take a moment to think. Sure, NaNo might not be for you (and that’s fine) but it’s a boon to some.

That is all.

Writing: Though it not be written down, yet forget not that I am an ass…

So, as some people know, I recently had a birthday. The number is only important to me and anyone waiting for me to die. Hopefully, that’s not many of you, but hey, a man never can tell. Sad face fact is that I’m worth a lot more dead than alive, and a far worse sad face fact is that’s probably true for most of you reading this. And that, ladies and gentlemen, is the American dream at work.

I digress, however, from the point of this post, which, as you can surmise by the title, is that yes, I AM AN ASS. I realize that isn’t news (at least, not shocking news), but it’s still a truth that I must face each and every day. Sometimes more, depending on how many times I look in a mirror. But holy fuck, I’m digressing again.

On point, the talented and insanely fucking smart Jen Sylvia (seriously, people, follow her blog, her twitter, and her other blog, and her other twitter…) reviewed Necromancer over at Nerdspan earlier this year. She reblogged the review last week on her website (yeah, the one I just TOLD YOU TO FOLLOW) and, being wrapped up in my berfday preparations, I completely missed it then and just caught it tonight. Hence, though it not be written down, yet forget not that I am an ass.

And, Ms. Sylvia, I am looking forward to your interview, sober or drunk.